Have you ever been in a situation that was so difficult that you wondered why God would allow you to be in it? Or maybe you have had a friend you wanted to encourage, but it was difficult to do because of what they were going through? I have experienced both, and both remind me of Leah.
She isn’t the first character that comes to mind when you read Jacob’s story. She isn’t noticed or celebrated. She is remembered as the woman Jacob was tricked into marrying, when he wanted and expected to marry her younger sister, Rachel.
How lonely and unwanted Leah must have felt! But, if you really look at her life, you notice that she never gave up. She continually showed herself faithful to Jacob, even though he loved her sister deeply. As you can imagine, this was a huge battle for Leah to overcome but she showed something towards her husband, Jacob and her sister, Rachel that is so powerful. Love. She loved them and was faithful in her situation and delighted in the blessing of being a mother of 6 children! God was faithful to her as she was faithful and loving regardless of her situation.
Leah’s story reminds me of a schoolgirl sitting in her classroom feeling lonely; feeling unseen. When I moved to North Carolina, I was in a place in my life where I was constantly lonely, constantly missing my home in Texas. I wondered, perhaps like Leah, why God would allow me to be in that situation.
During that season, the only thing that got me through was constantly reminding myself that Jesus would never leave me. I truly do believe that in the midst of my pain, Jesus was my one true and real friend, and He gave me the gift of community since living here. He also showed me what real friends looked like. Real friends are the people that stick by you and love you where you are and believe in you no matter your circumstances. I am thankful for friends who are like that in my life, and I want to be the kind of friend Jesus is to me.
One of my very best friends has so much potential, but for a few months she didn’t see it, and it became difficult to encourage her. She was constantly asking how she can improve in her walk with Jesus and how she can live out an unshakeable faith. So, I continued to encourage her to seek out what she loved doing most; what brought joy into her life. That passion was leading worship. She sought out that passion and we began leading worship together at our church. Through that season, I was able to speak out the unseen potential inside of her. I got to encourage her in her calling and see her grow more than I’d seen before.
“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.” Proverbs 3:3
Loving people where they’re at is one of the greatest gifts in life we get. When you plant seeds in the lives of others, you know there will always be a harvest. How can you love someone in your life the way Leah loved Jacob? Be faithful. Love when it isn’t easy. Love others even when they don’t loved back.
God will reward you for your faithfulness.
Read more on Leah in our “Learning from Their Examples” series.
- Wo Will Be In Your Family Tree? – Cindy
- What’s Love Got To Do With It? – Cassandra
- Unloved and Overlooked – Tonya
- Wonderfully Mad, Perfect – Beth
- Looking For Love – Cheryl
- Sisterwives – Andrea