Sometimes I feel like a monster.
Not one of those monsters under your bed or in your closet because that’s so Western. I feel like those monsters hidden under the guise of a human being. I was one that is so vile, and hideous that only I know that I am a monster. Yet at some point, I would emerge as a force to be reckoned with.
I guess this feeling stems from my thoughts and actions. Often times I have acted out of spite towards my friends, siblings, and even my parents in the form of off hand remarks, cruel jokes and physical abuse. The worst though is total neglect. Often times, if I was not acting it out, I was thinking vile thoughts towards strangers and friends. Those are the worst actually. My thoughts range from murder to sexual abuse to verbal obscenities among others with the worst being total apathy. Those things happen inside my head on an almost daily basis.
Now tell me if you do not do or at least think nof the same things. I’d say you are a total liar. We are all monsters inside. We are our own demon. Our emotions, our impulses, our heart often unleash that monster.
Makes us wonder if we even deserved to live at all.
Jacob wondered the same thing all his life. He may be one of the known characters of the Bible but his life was not really worth copying at all. His name even meant supplanter or usurper. This is equivalent to having Thief or Robber as a name.
He was like you or me who made a lot of wrong choices. He connived with his mother to obtain his father’s property. He took advantage of his father’s failing eyesight. He pretended to be his older brother to get his father’s blessings for the family property. To make matters worse he even used God’s name in the process.
Like any other sin, the guilty feeling comes after you have done the worst. Jacob was no exception. His relationship with his father and brother were broken to the point that his brother even vowed to kill him. He had no choice but to skip town but he would also have to leave behind his mother, his friends, and all of his possessions.
So here he was a fugitive. He guilty for what he did. He was depressed for not being there for his father’s death. He was anxious for his mother’s state. He was afraid of his older brother. Finally, he was awaiting God’s punishment for all of this. Anyone would have thought that there will be hell to pay for what he has done. He realized his wrongs and was guilty for it. He ran away desperate probably to the point of ending his own life. Maybe he prayed, maybe he humbled himself, for sure, he did what any guilty man would do.
He had no choice but to sleep in the wilderness that night with a stone for a pillow. He was alone, shivering and defenseless. He knew that at any moment the Lord’s punishment would come.
And then, he had a dream. He saw a huge staircase with angels ascending and descending. “There above it stood the Lord , and he said: “I am the Lord , the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying. Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east, to the north and to the south. All peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring. I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” Genesis 28:13-15 NIV
That was kinda unfair right? Jacob was guilty. He was a liar, a thief and a cheater. And yet here was God offering him blessings. Here was God calling him and giving him a promise. There might be something special about Jacob or he may be just an ordinary guy with a very guilty heart.
I guess it just goes to show how God’s love operates. You may be the most vile person on earth. You might be a monster, a murderer, a criminal. But His love falls down on everyone including you. His mercy is there. He understands what you are going through: the anguish after realizing your mistakes; the guilty feeling that you do not deserve any blessing; and that depressing thought that you will never be worthy of his love. Yet God breaks it and still gives you a second chance – a third chance even – to mend your ways. He knows that the consequences of your errors were enough punishment. As long as you know that your are sinful and you wanted to change, He will show that His saving grace has always been there.
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:6, 8 NIV
You may think of yourself as a monster, a sinner or unworthy. But with Christ’s sacrifice, we have one shot at atonement with God without any cost. What are you waiting for then? Repent, confess your sins and receive the salvation that Christ has to offer.
Story of Jacob could be found at Genesis chapter 25, 27 and 28.
The concept for this post was based on Bro. H. Cummings’ sermon at Bacolod Adventist Church 4-18-2015