The Blessing of Wrestling with God

Life doesn’t always make sense. We won’t understand many things this side of heaven, so we have to ask: Is it ok to question God? Is it ok to doubt, and to wrestle with Him over circumstances and situations that we don’t understand? Let’s look to God’s word…

Through Psalms, we can learn from the example of David- questioning God in his prayers, and confessing doubts, anger and confusion. We also see how God welcomes David’s raw honesty, and we know that David was a “man after God’s own heart.” So yes, it is ok to share all of ourselves with the Lord, with honor and respect. God knows us better than we know ourselves, yet He loves a transparent heart.

In Genesis 32, we read about Jacob’s wrestling match with God, and not only does God engage with him throughout the night, several blessings resulted from this encounter. In fact, Jacob specifically says, “I will not let you go until you bless me.” (V.26) -and God does.

So let’s take a look at these blessings. These are the “wins.” These are the things the Lord wants to give us in and through our struggles.

“How long must I wrestle with my thoughts... But I trust in your unfailing love.” -Psalm 13:2a, 5a


"For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered." -Genesis 32:30

We can easily settle for surface relationships- with God and others. The challenge is that taking initiative and working through difficulties is not easy, although the blessings of deep connection far outweigh the effort required.

"These things I remember as I pour out my soul..." (Read Psalm 42)


"...He touched his hip socket, and Jacob's hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with Him." -Genesis 32:25

No one intentionally seeks brokenness, and yet it truly is a gift. One of the biggest barriers to intimacy with God is ourselves! Our pride. Our desire to do things on own for our own purposes. Yet when we are broken by the depth of our sin, salvation becomes more precious, and we begin to live an abundant life of dependency on the Lord.

"Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice...”(Read Psalm 51)


"Your name shall no longer be Jacob, but Israel..." Genesis 32:28

As we wrestle with God, we not only come to know Him in a deeper way, we begin to understand ourselves as well. Our desires and sinful habits. Our ways of processing the world, and the calling He has specifically placed on our lives. The closer we get to Him, the more clarity we have. In Jacob's case, God gave him a new name. A vision for the legacy he would have. He would be the Father of the 12 tribes of Israel, and through that wrestling match, Jacob had been strengthened and he had experienced the power of God that would bring those promises to pass.

"May the name of the God of Jacob protect you!" (Read Psalm 20)

Are you willing to wrestle? Take some time to identity what you are struggling with. Circumstances of our world? Difficult relationships at home and beyond? Spiritual questions and doubts? We are going for the win, and God invites you to engage with Him in raw honesty and total transparency. Pray as Jacob did, and ask the Lord to bless you.

-Candace Lane

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