The day was long, but filled our eyes; seeing new places is always a gift. But as the bus pulled away and our backs were to Pittsburgh, my eyes were heavy, my limbs longed for home. Another field trip. Perhaps the last one with this soon-to-be middle schooler who sits behind me on this bus. I cherish each smile, each overheard juvenile jibe at his friends. But as we pull into the drive at 10:30pm, I am happy to be home.
“Will Jeffy be up?” oldest son wonders as we breathe a sigh of relief for home sweet home.
“He had better not be,” I say sternly.
But as we pull in the garage, littlest son opens the door. Cannot wait until we are parked to see our faces.
He races out on the cold concrete in his robe, all smiles and hugs.
“What are you still doing up?” I ask in mock indignation.
But they are gone, inside; and before I finish unpacking the car, that effervescent laughter drifts out to me, filling my heart with joy.
They missed each other.
I am reminded of two other brothers, reunited:
“But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept.” (Gen. 33:4)
How blessed we are to witness a love born into these two. They will have misunderstandings, fights, utter words that wound, cease to speak at times…But God willing, they will run to meet each other and embrace when parted.
And I wonder about Jacob and Esau. About when they began to miss each other. Was it right away? Or did it take months of silence from the voice each knew as well as his own? These rivals who took the fact that the same blood ran through their veins for granted. These childhood playmates that grew immune to the presence of one another. When did they realize that when separated from the one who shared the womb, a part of the heart was missing?
“For seeing your face is like seeing the face of God, now that you have received me favorably.” (vs 10b)
For Jacob had seen the face of God. He had wrestled with God in the place called Peniel. And though he emerged wounded, he also emerged blessed.
Could it be that the same was true for his time of wrestling over the relationship with his brother?
Our loved ones wound us, yes, but, oh, the blessings of giving and receiving love!
Let it always be so, Lord. Let it always be so for my boys
Father, what beautiful stories you have given us. Thank you for the rivalry and the love of siblings! Let our lives be a beautiful story, too, My King. Let our relationships bring you glory.