“I will go down to Egypt with you, and I will surely bring you back again.”
— Genesis 46:4
Jacob, who was now called Israel, had reconciled with his brother, Esau, and was living back in Canaan (Genesis 32-33). But after staying there for many years, he was on the move again. His son, Joseph, whom he had thought was dead (Genesis 37), had become a ruler in Egypt. And there was a great famine in the land (Genesis 41-45), so Jacob went to Egypt to live out the rest of his days.
Sometimes God moves us in unexpected and surprising ways. A new job opportunity comes our way. Our grown children move to a different part of the country, and we follow. Moving can be difficult: we leave behind what is familiar, and the new place we go—even if it’s exciting—is unknown and unpredictable.
Jacob spends time with God in worship on his way to Egypt. He needs to know that God will be with him, that God’s promises will be valid in this new place as well. He expresses his readiness to do whatever God tells him: “Here I am,” he says. And God promises to bring Jacob’s family back to their home in Canaan again.
When we face unexpected opportunities in life, do we seek God’s will in worship and prayer? As followers of Christ walking in step with his Spirit, we are assured that the Lord will always be with us. So we can journey with God’s promises—no matter where we go.
God of new opportunities, thank you for unexpected places and opportunities in which to serve you. Help us to discern your will and leading, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.