Once upon a time, a young man named Jacob (which means deceiver) fled from his house and took up residence with his Uncle Laban. He fell in love with Laban’s daughter Rachel. He traded 7 years of hard work in order to marry her. When he woke up the next morning he found that Laban had tricked him and he had married Rachel’s older sister Leah (which means ugly, gross, “dry-heave”). Jacob was furious and approached his Uncle Laban, “Why have you deceived me?” “It is not our custom here to give the younger daughter in marriage before the older one.” And so Jacob finished out Leah’s wedding week and received Rachel, in return for another seven years of labor to Laban.
God saw that Leah was not loved, so he opened her womb and closed Rachel’s. She bore Jacob a son and named in Rueben (Vision). She bore another son and named him Simeon (hear, respond intelligently). And again she gave birth to a son and named him Levi (remain/stability, trustworthy). And then she gave birth to Judah (which means praise). Some time later Leah and Rachel had a little argument; Rachel wanted the mandrakes and Leah refused because Rachel had taken away her husband. To settle the matter Leah was to sleep with her husband and Rachel was to get the mandrakes. Leah gave birth to her fifth son and named him Issachar (fruits of ministry, reward). Upon the birth of Leah’s sixth son she had hope that her husband Jacob would treat her with honor, she named the boy Zebulun (habitation, dwelling with God). And then Leah gave birth to a daughter and named her Dinah (justice – Word of God coming to life). Genesis 29:31-30:25.
Do you have a vision? A calling from God? Something you were made for? It is not the “custom” to receive it right away. Many times God gives us “Leah” before “Rachel.” Do you have a dream ministry? Dream job? Dream profession? Do you feel God has left you somewhere far off course? I was made for “Rachel” not “Leah” and I often find myself complaining about it. Not that a bad attitude is productive – but as we see in Jacob’s life – God brought life to Leah and not to Rachel for a certain time – to bring about His purposes.
Later on in chapter 30 God brought about the time for Jacob to move on, He also opened Rachel’s womb. Patience is the key. Be diligent with the tasks God gave you. Work without complaining so you can recognize and partake of the fruit. There came a time when Jacob finally learned to give and not grumble and be obedient and when had gotten past himself, God gave him a new name. Though you may be in your “Leah” stage – remember that in it God will give you Vision, you will learn to Hear His Voice and Respond Intelligently. When you Remain you become Stability for those around you and they Trust you. You will recognize these things and give Praise to God, you’ll begin to see the Fruits of your Ministry and grow closer to the Dwelling of God – and He will be Just and bring about His Word in you – Life.