Vayeitzei (He left)
Parashah: Genesis 28:10 – 32:3
2nd Aliyah: Genesis 29:1-17
This Torah portion is a wonderful study. In the 2nd Aliyah, in which we are studying this week, has within it the wonderful story of the first meeting between Jacob and Rachel.
So many beautiful truths, lie within this Parashah, but what caught my attention, in this 2nd Aliyah, was verse 7 and 8, specifically when Jacob was talking to the 3 shepherds from Haran.
The shepherds and flocks were sitting around the capped well waiting for the rest of the livestock and shepherds to arrive.
And Joseph said, “Lo, it is yet high day, neither is it time that the cattle (livestock) should be gathered together: water ye the sheep and go and feed them.”
So, Jacob is basically saying, “why are you sitting around? Water your sheep and take them to go feed.” But the response of the shepherds was that they could not remove the capstone until all the flocks were there. Regardless of the hour of the day, the timing of the watering of the sheep was contingent upon the arrival of the other flocks. (Boy, there is a message there, isn’t there? But I want to share something else, potentially in a different direction.
While reading this portion the word that came to my mind is, “Timing.”
Now, we can’t really tell how long they had been waiting, nor do we know how long Jacob had been waiting there with them, but it stands to reason, by the conversation we are privy to, that Jacob hadn’t been there long and probably only long enough to engage in some small talk with these shepherds.
What we know from this reading is that the other flocks were waiting on Rachel and her flock to arrive before they could water their flocks. Perhaps, Rachel was running a little bit late that day and Jacob had just gotten there. If Rachel had been on time, or early, would the other flocks still have been there when Jacob arrived? If Jacob had been later, would this “chance” first encounter with his future beloved even have happened? Why is this first encounter so important and is there a message in here for us?
Timing: “the choice, judgement, or control of when something should be done; a particular point or period of time when something happens”, according to the dictionary. Certainly, neither Rachel nor Jacob had control of the timing of this first meeting, but both were extremely blessed and joyful as a result.
Many times, I have received blessings or been spared catastrophe because of “timing”. But timing sometimes also requires obedience, or at least submitting to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Amen?
If you have ever had a compulsion to turn off a road, or even tap the brakes of your car for some unknown reason, then you may understand this. I have been spared from calamity more times than I can count through situations like this. I have also received tremendous blessings as a result of listening and submitting to seeming compulsion.
The latest episode just few years ago, I had a compulsion to hit my brakes halfway through an intersection, just a split second before a car sped through a red-light, nearly missing my car by mere millimeters.
I have received great blessings because of timing, as well. February 19,2012, I had a strong compulsion to visit a small neighborhood church that I had never visited before. As a result, I met my future husband. If I had not gone to that little neighborhood church for the first time on 2/19/2012, perhaps I would never have met David. Certainly, if I had not eventually been obedient to YHVH and moved to SC, I would not have married him.
David taught yesterday (Command God), how we may command YHVH as to his promises, but YHVH, in His sovereignty, reserves the right to the timing of the fulfillment of His promises. And if we walk in the Spirit, then we will be able to hear that still small voice that will compel us and lead us to our blessings or away from calamity. Amen?
So, in conclusion, “timing” is subject to one being submissive to the voice and the leadings of the Holy Spirit. As you walk through this week, may the Spirit be your guide and Torah your compass, Amen?