Gen. 30:25-26 – “After Rachel gave birth to Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, 'Send me on my way so I can go back to my own homeland. Give me my wives and children, for whom I have served you, and I will be on my way. You know how much work I've done for you.'”
- SERVANT RATHER THAN SON – Jacob requested his freedom as if he were an indentured servant – not a son. He'd evidently never felt a part of Laban's family even after marrying both Laban's daughters over fourteen years prior. When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we become children of God – but do we truly feel/act like children, or do we still feel/act like servants? A servant MUST work and hopes to be released from duty after a time. A family member never “retires” from the family.
- WORK RATHER THAN GIFTS – Jacob refuses to allow Laban to GIVE him anything. He shuns Laban's gift because of past baggage, and instead, Jacob bargains for more work, thinking he has a fool-proof way to earn his freedom. To shun a deceiver's gift is wise; however, sometimes we shun God's gracious gifts in order to feel as though we've earned His pleasure or approval. Working FOR God is not only unnecessary, it's counter-productive to our faith in a gracious God.
- SILENCE RATHER THAN CONFRONTATION – Rather than confronting Laban when he was cheated again, Jacob followed old wives' tales and tried to solve the problem using his own methods. When we have been repeatedly disappointed, we sometimes become angry or disillusioned and even blame God. Though the LORD never cheats us or deals with us dishonestly, when we seek our own solutions and refuse to ask for God's help, it's similar to Jacob's silent treatment.