Jacob now has two wives, and begins his family. In the process, he begins to see the promises of God to Abraham begin to unfold. Whereas Abraham only had one child by Sarah, and then Isaac only had two by Rebekah, now Jacob has multiple babies by his two wives and their maids. In this passage, they have 11 children in short order, the greatest proliferation of children thus far in the Bible. This is the beginning of the great nation that would come from Abraham, where the nation would outnumber the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore.
It is interesting to note how Rachel and Leah interact, with some sort of sibling rivalry painting the backdrop. They offer their maids as surrogates when their conception slows down or does not produce. Leah, the less-favored wife, finds affirmation in the fact that she has given her husband more children than Rachel. Rachel’s eventual bearing of Joseph is a milestone event in Rachel’s life, as she is now no longer barren. Their value is bound up in their motherhood. God even used this rivalry to effect His purpose. He did not necessarily want them to feel the pressure or the stress, but when they did it on their own volition, God used it to effect His purpose. God often takes us through twists and turns, some of which we cause ourselves, in order to take us through to our destiny! You see, God is not surprised by our choices and actions. He may be saddened by them, but He is not surprised. Therefore, God gives you all the resources and direction you need to navigate the path ahead. Trust Him!
Another area of blessing was in the flocks of Laban. Jacob asked Laban to give him certain types of sheep, lambs, and goats. Only those would be His wages. Laban took those out, and left Jacob to tend the rest. However, Jacob, whether by his own design or by God’s providence, placed rods before the sheep when they conceived and they bore strong spotted, striped, and brown offspring, which were Jacob’s wages. Even though Laban put Jacob in a hole, God favored him and blessed him beyond anything he could have imagined.
Even though we may not always get everything right, if we do our best to put God first and to seek His will, God will open up His blessings in our lives. Trust God, Follow God, and watch the blessings explode!