“On the third day Laban was told that Jacob had fled. Taking his relatives with him, he pursued Jacob for seven days and caught up with him in the hill country of Gilead. Then God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream at night and said to him, ‘Be careful not to say anything to Jacob, either good or bad.’

Jacob had pitched his tent in the hill country of Gilead when Laban overtook him, and Laban and his relatives camped there too. Then Laban said to Jacob, ‘What have you done? You’ve deceived me, and you’ve carried off my daughters like captives in war. Why did you run off secretly and deceive me? Why didn’t you tell me, so I could send you away with joy and singing to the music of timbrelsand harps? You didn’t even let me kiss my grandchildren and my daughters goodbye. You have done a foolish thing. I have the power to harm you; but last night the God of your father said to me, ‘Be careful not to say anything to Jacob, either good or bad.’ Now you have gone off because you longed to return to your father’s household. But why did you steal my gods?’

Jacob answered Laban, ‘I was afraid, because I thought you would take your daughters away from me by force’.” Genesis 31:24-31 (NIV)



Jacob had worked for Laban for many years in order to marry his daughter. Laban deceived Jacob and he had to work seven more years. Even after he was married, Jacob continued to work for Laban, his father-in-law, but there came a time when it wasn’t feasible for both of their families to leave in the same area. Laban had been deceitful in the beginning of their relationship, and Jacob had become deceitful in building his flock and wealth. Their family relationship was strained. Jacob had a dream that he needed to move, so he fled with his family and possessions without telling Laban. Laban came to find Jacob, and God warned Laban in a dream to not harm Jacob. When Jacob was questioned about his motives, fear had driven him away.

Anytime we operate in our relationships out of fear, our perspective becomes distorted. Fear distorts. It skews reality, ascribes motives that may or may not be present, and breaks down relationships. You may be facing a relationship situation in your life, whether a family relationship, friendship, or love relationship, that has been impacted by fear. Later in the story of Laban and Jacob, they parted on amicable terms after communicating. Today’s lesson is practical. What conversation do you need to have to bridge the gap in a strained relationship? It might not immediately fix the relationship, but shrinking back in fear only creates isolation. Ask God to show you how you can continue to walk in peace and good relationship with the people in your life and step out in faith to remedy relationships that have been hurt in the past accordance with His leading.


THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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About Hona Amer

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