Have you ever felt this way? Sometimes we get in such a bind that it seems there is no way to undo the mess we have created. Or maybe everything in life is just so overwhelming and we long for a breath of fresh air. Maybe we have become so confused in our heads and we don’t know which way is forward.

The truth is we all need a restart from time to time. Just like our phones, tablets and computers need to be restarted to get up to speed, we too need to restart.

This week in worship we will be looking at a story in Genesis 32:22-32 where Jacob wrestles with God and eventually gains a new name, Israel, because of his struggle. However, if you look at the chapters leading up to this moment, the life of Jacob is truly messy. From messes he created with his brother, Esau, to a mess he was brought into by his father-in-law, Laban, it seems that there is no easy way forward.

When Jacob wrestles with God, it is almost symbolic of his life leading up to this point. He is struggling to get his head above water. And yet, in the midst of this struggle, he comes face to face with God. And God offers him a blessing for his persistence amid the struggle. Of the many things God could have done, God chooses to give Jacob a new start and sets him on a path that will ultimately bless generations to come. He is given a new name, Israel, symbolizing a new beginning of something greater yet to come.

This story shows us how God longs to offer us newness amid our own struggles. No matter what you are carrying or going through right now, trust that God longs to bring you a breath of fresh air and new direction. It may not be as monumental as a name change, but it could be as simple as a new perspective or rhythm in life. We don’t have to get rid of everything bad in order to feel renewed. All we need is a divine blessing.

As we make strides through 2022, I pray that each of us receives a divine blessing of fresh air. I pray that you are able to put the past behind and step forward on a path that God is calling you into, a path full of life and love. Let’s make the most of this new year God has given us!

Join us this Sunday at 11am in-person or online as we discuss this a little more in depth! Have a great week!

Peace and blessings, 

Pastor Kipp