• Heidi J. Smith

When Your Life Changes in a Day: Lesson with Rebekah

Photo credit to Annie Spratt from Unsplash

Have you ever received news that changed your life?

Maybe you lost a loved one, or discovered a secret that shook your world. Maybe you inherited a large amount of money, or your company relocated you.

In my life when I received the phone call that my mom died, I shut down. I knew death was a part of life, but why did it have to be my mom so soon?

How do we respond when our lives change in a day?

In the Bible Rebekah's life changed in a day.

As a young beautiful virgin, Rebekah daily carried water from the spring. It was her normal chore, but one day a stranger asked her for a drink (Genesis 24:16-17).

Rebekah shared her water jug with him and then offered to draw water for his ten camels. She knew camels drank a lot of water, but she didn't mind the hard work. After she finished drawing about 300 hundred gallons of water, the man gave her some presents and asked to stay at her family's home (Genesis 24:18-22).

Little did Rebekah know that the man would ask her a question that would change her life forever. The stranger asked Rebekah to marry Isaac, his master's son, and she willing agreed to go the next morning (Genesis 24:54-58).

Just imagine for a minute...

Rebekah was only a sister and daughter, but tomorrow she will be a bride and heiress. Today she hauled water, but tomorrow she will move 550 miles away to an unknown country, husband, and people. She left her family and friends to step out in courage.

The stranger had prayed for Isaac's bride and God answered his prayer request (Genesis 24:12). Isaac married Rebekah, but she couldn't conceive for twenty years so they prayed. When her babies wrestled in her womb, she prayed (Genesis 24:19-23).

However when Isaac wanted to bless their oldest son Esau, Rebekah and Jacob tricked Isaac. She took matters into her own hands and created a disaster. Jacob left a few days later and never saw his mom again.

Just as Rebekah's life changed in a day, our lives will too. We can respond by...

First, doing our best. Rebekah went above-and-beyond to help the stranger by drawing water for ten camels.

What task do we face daily? Are we in the middle of school, parenting, working, or serving? Do we do the bare minimum, or are we doing our best for the Lord?

As we do the little things, they will prepare us for tomorrow.

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters." Colossians 3:23 NIV

Secondly, stepping out in faith. Rebekah willing left the familiar for the unfamiliar.

How do we respond when everything changes? Do we stay frozen in fear, or do we step forward in faith? As we focus on the past, we remember it a certain way and forget to live today, but God promises to walk with us.

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 NIV

Third, leaning on the Lord. Isaac's family prayed for a bride. Isaac and Rebekah prayed for children, and she prayed during the pregnancy. But when Isaac give the blessing, she took matters into her own hands and created a mess.

What situation seems impossible? Are we trying to solve the problem ourselves, or are we leaning on the Lord? As we face difficult situations, we need to trust in the Lord because He promises to help us. Even though we don't know the outcome, the Lord does and nothing is too hard for Him.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV

When our lives change in a day, may we do our best today, step forward in faith, and lean on the Lord.

Lord, sometimes life throws us unexpected situations. May we honor You as we walk the unknown and may our faith grow stronger as we lean on You.

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Heidi J. Smith