I like somewhat a sense of humour by God — “Abraham was now old and well advanced in years” He is over 137 years old — so if anyone is less than 137 years old, you are not old or well advanced in years. That makes all of us young!
Abraham makes his servant take an oath to “(1) go to my country; (2) and my relatives; and (3) get a wife for my son Issac”, but the servant cannot take Issac with him to there (“Only do not take my son back there”). Have you ever tried to set up your friend for a blind date ever? Do you recall how difficult it is? In this case, the servant has to go to another country (a manner of speaking) and specifically find his master’s long lost relatives (the Master left the country 60 years ago!) and find a bride for the master’s son whom he cannot even take with him for introduction! No colour picture, no Skype, no Facebook introduction, no email, no cell phone, no nothing! What a task! On top of that, the Master says “he [my God]will send his angel before you so that you can get a wife for my son from there” – so the servant has to do some work with the angel of his Master’s God. Talk about a major task here! But, the servant was obedient. He took an oath and went his way. By the way, I like the fact that he had an escape route set up in advance — “If the woman is unwilling to come back with you, then you will be released from this oath of mine”! Yeah, this servant really worked out “what ifs”. So he went onto this crazy journey.
The first thing he did was to park at the “likely” location in the country — the well outside of town! Good choice – where would you meet girls in that time? The well outside of town. So he got to the country and he got to the likely location. Now, he only had to do three more items: (1) find the Master’s relative; (2) make a proposal without showing the bridegroom; and (3) convince the girl to leave everything and everyone to come along with him. Wow – if he was born in this century, he got to be one great dealer-wheeler. However, before he starts anything, he PRAYED! I find his prayer so interesting. He first pleaded with his general wish — “God of my master Abraham, give me success today, and show kindness to my master” — good opening statement! Then, he describes his factual predicament or circumstances – “See, I am standing beside this spring, and the daughters of the townspeople are coming out to draw water.” Then he made specific request – “May it be that when I say to a girl…. – let her be the one you have chosen for your servant Issac.” So in order for God to give him success, he asked for very specific signs so that he could follow. What happens next? “Before he had finished praying” —- yeah, the servant did not even finish his prayer! He did not even finish the final touch of what he needs to be certain. Don’t you wish that God respond to your prayer this fast? I do….
Of course Rebekah comes along as the first woman! Wow, super-speedy response by God. But, the servant did not finish his request… does it matter? No, it did not. “Praise be to the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who has not abandoned his kindness and faithfulness to my master. As for me, the Lord has led me on the journey to the house of my master’s relatives”! Yes, the final request by the servant would have been “a right girl for my master Issac has to come from my master’s long lost relative whom my master left 60 years ago.” Just give you an idea, I left South Korea 25 years ago. I do not have any immediate family there any longer. I have one uncle from my mother’s side that I probably call upon. That’s only after 25 years! We are talking about 60 years here!
So the servant got to the country and the master’s relatives and found a girl. The only thing left for him is to convince the girl to go with him within 24 hours of meeting — I mean, she is to leave with a stranger who is not even his bridegroom within 24 hours of meeting him to middle of nowhere to whom she has never seen before by leaving her own country, families and friends. I don’t know about you, but I would be apprehensive, say the least! So the servant asked Rebekah and she said “yes”. Can you picture it? I used “picture it” method to read this passage – it was amazing! Do you remember how to do that? You put yourself into the story – how would you feel if you are Rebekah? You went about your own business by going to the well outside of town to get some water. A stranger approached to you… By the way, in this century, we would “run” or “be apprehensive”, but she was brave (or fearless – since there is no indication that she was scared of the servant) and kind; in addition, she was obedient because she heard the entire story by the servant and submitted herself. Can you see yourself there? What about the servant? Can you see yourself as the servant? Do you see yourself praying for your master to the God of your master (not even your own)? Can you see yourself asking a stranger to leave everything and everyone to go with him to get married to your master because the God of his master said so?
And happy ending – at least by the end of today’s reading….
Before you start today, have you prayed to God “Heavenly Father, please give me success today” and laid down all your circumstances and requested what you needed to see happening? If not, why not doing it right now before we forget or distract by something else in our busy life?