What You See Is What You Get
Genesis 30 – This story is told to increase our faith. The main characters in this story are Jacob and his father-in-law Laban. Laban was a very wealthy man, having many heads of goats and sheep.
After Rachel gave birth to Joseph, Jacob spoke to Laban, “Let me go back home. Give me my wives and children for whom I’ve served you. You know how hard I’ve worked for you.”
Laban said, “If you please, I have learned through divine iniquity that God has blessed me because of you."” He went on, name your wages. I’ll pay you."
Jacob replied, “You know well what my work has meant to you and how your livestock has flourished under my care. The little you had when I arrived has increased greatly; everything I did resulted in blessings for you. Isn’t it about time that I do something for my own family?”
“So, what shall I pay you?”
Jacob said, “You don’t have to pay me a thing. But how about this? I will go back to pasture and care for your flocks. Go through your entire flock today and take out every speckled or spotted sheep, every dark-colored lamb, and every spotted or speckled goat. They will be my wages. That way you can check on my honesty when you assess my wages. If you find any goat that’s not speckled or spotted or a sheep that’s not black, you will know that I stole it.”
“Fair enough” said Laban. “It’s a deal.”
“But that very day Laban removed all the mottled and spotted billy goats and all the speckled and spotted nanny-goats, every animal that had even a touch of white on it plus all the black sheep and placed them under the care of his sons. Then he put a three-day journey between himself and Jacob. Meanwhile Jacob went on tending what was left of Laban’s flock.
But Jacob got fresh branches from poplar, almond and plant trees and peeled the bark, leaving white stripes on them. He stuck the peeled branches in front of the watering troughs when the flocks came to drink. When the flocks were in heat, they came to drink and mated in front of the streaked branches. Then they gave birth to young that were streaked or spotted or speckled. Jacob placed the ewes before the dark-colored animals of Laban. That way he got distinctive flocks for himself which he didn’t mea with Laban’s flocks. And when the sturdier animals were mating, Jacob placed branches at the troughs in view of the animals of that they mated in front of the branches. But he wouldn’t set up the branches before the feebler animals. That way the feeble animals went to Laban and the sturdy ones to Jacob.
The man got richer and richer, acquiring huge flocks, lots and lots of servants not to mention camels and donkeys.
It was believed by some that what sheep and goats saw at the time of breeding would determine the color of their young.
One day when I was reading this story, the Lord spoke to me “what are you looking at, what are you keeping before your eyes. What is your dream and desires.”
Many times when we look at our circumstances, we can’t see beyond them to perhaps the Promise Land God wants us to have.