“The LORD has shown unfailing love…”-Genesis 24:27
I’m a bit of a romantic. Every time I read about Isaac and Rebekah’s first meeting in Genesis 24, I can almost hear Kenny G playing saxophone in the background.
I mean, the scene drips with romance.
The story begins with Isaac’s Dad, Abraham, not wanting him to marry a local gal but rather one from their far away homeland, so Abraham sends a servant to go scout out the prospects for Isaac. Everything goes fabulously and upon arriving in the far country, the servant finds a lovely lady by the name of Rebekah who, it becomes obvious, is definitely the one (Genesis 24:12-20).
The servant does a great job as wedding planner, working out all the details with Rebekah’s family. Though it would be an arranged marriage, as was customary in that time and place, it was not against Rebekah’s will. She was given an opportunity to say yes or no, and she gave an unambiguous “Yes.”
“So they called Rebekah. ‘Are you willing to go with this man?’ they asked her. And she replied, ‘Yes, I will go.'”Genesis 24:58
Like the servant, maybe Rebekah somehow sensed that God was working behind the scenes in this intriguing meet-up. Maybe her random encounter with the nice man at the well that day wasn’t so random after all? The more she recognized the divine fingerprints all over the situation, the faster her heart beat with anticipation at meeting this guy.
Then it happened. After a very long (and smelly) camel ride, Rebekah finally got to meet the man for whom she had left everything behind. This was the moment she had waited for and she would not be disappointed.
“One evening as he (Isaac) was walking and meditating in the fields, he looked up and saw the camels coming. When Rebekah looked up and saw Isaac, she quickly dismounted from her camel. ‘Who is that man walking through the fields to meet us?’ she asked the servant. And he replied, ‘It is my master.’ So Rebekah covered herself with her veil.
Then the servant told Isaac everything he had done.
And Isaac brought Rebekah into his mother Sarah’s tent, and she became his wife. He loved her deeply and she was a comfort to him after the death of his mother.”Genesis 24:63-67
The scene easily lends itself to our imaginations. Isaac and Rebekah running across the field toward each other in slow motion, Rebekah’s hair blowing in the wind and Isaac becoming more and more dumbstruck the closer he gets to this veiled beauty until finally…they embrace. They are together, finally together, and it was love at first sight.
Unlike his father and his sons who had multiple wives, Jacob would know only one woman in his lifetime. Rebekah was the one for him. They would go the distance together. Though not perfect, their romance would be lifelong.
This is but one of the many inspiring love stories found in Scripture. From Adam and Eve forward, the Bible tells the story of the ups and downs and the risks and rewards of love.
Yet, always in the backdrop is the story of God’s relentless love for humanity displayed on a cross. It is the unrivaled love of God that anchors and sustains our human capacity to love and be loved. Were it not for the divine romance in which God pursued a relationship with us at the expense of His only Son, ours would be a loveless existence.
Hard to imagine.
But because of God’s love, in the midst of all the hate and meanness of our world, romance isn’t gone forever. Because Jesus is alive, so is love. This is still a love story and you are in it.
May the Lord help us today to receive His love and then promptly give it away – to our husbands and wives, to our children, to our friends, and even to our enemies – knowing there’s always more where that came from.
It’s a new day with God. Run with it.