“Gather together and hear, you sons of Jacob, and listen to Israel your father.”
Life works because of contradictions. If you haven’t yet understood that every person is never just one thing, live a little longer and give yourself a chance to get to know human beings better: the one who is so kind, may also be angry. Someone can be generous and stingy at the same time; they can be excellent at praying and yet full of unbelief, like the disciples who prayed for Peter’s release from jail, but who were shocked when he showed up at their house! It hardly seems to make sense!
Jacob had two names and they pointed to the two different aspects of him: he was Jacob, the deceiver, who tricked his brother out of his birthright, and Israel, the prince, who carried the blessing of the Lord for His generation. Just as Jacob’s sons had to deal with their father’s dual nature, we too have to handle the contradictions within those we are closest to.
The one who is so strong can also be terribly weak, just as Elijah was when in the same day, he first defeated the prophets of Baal in a mighty showdown and then ran in fear from a woman. It can be bewildering; the thing that is not nice about them may well just be wrong and unacceptable in your eyes. How will you deal with the contradictions in the person you love?
Instead of rejecting them, what about accepting the fullness of who they are? They have not ceased to be valuable and even excellent just because they have a side that is not so admirable! The truth is that you can never achieve true depth in any relationship until you have decided to love the other and be committed to them despite their contradictions.
Remember, this is not a one-way street. The day will come when you need them to do the same for you, so start today and take your relationships to a whole new level.
Heavenly Father, thank you that in your Word we can see such clear examples of people whom you used, but who were full of contradictions. I recognize that we are all a work in progress, and I make a determination not to be easily put off by the less attractive side of people.
In particular, I thank you for the grace to handle the contradictions in the people I love. Help me to embrace them fully and love them unconditionally, because that is your heart for them. Thank you, also, for people who accept and love me for who I am. In Jesus’ name.