“Whenever Aaron enters the Holy Place, he will bear the names of the sons of Israel over his heart on the breastpiece of decision as a continual memorial before the LORD.” Exodus 28:29
One of the ways that people like to remember other people is wearing a necklace that brings a memory of a person. There are many younger girls that wear a necklace with the BFF, Best Friends Forever, stamped up it. They want to remember their best friend at all times.
Another way that many people remember someone is with a small picture inside a pendant hung around the neck. These can be pictures of someone still alive or a loved one who has passed away. Either way it is a way of remembering the person. It can bring back many memories of good times, the love and friendship of that person.
As Aaron was to enter the Holy Place, the temple, he was to wear a piece that carried all the names of the sons of Israel, the tribes of Israel, over his heart. As he met with God, this would help him to remember all of the people of Israel and to bring their needs before God.
One of his jobs as high priest, Aaron would have to bring the offerings and sacrifices of the people to God. When they sinned against or praised God, it was Aaron who stood before God for them.
When Jesus came, he made all who are His followers priests. Every believer is a priest before God. As a priest, believers have the ability to stand before God on the behalf of other people. The believer is also now the temple of God himself. He can always be in the presence of God.
Each and every day, the believer must bring before God the needs and praises of those he knows. He must remember the names of the people who are in need around him, rather than just focus on his own personal needs, just as Aaron and Jesus had done.
You are a priest of God, if you are a believer. You have direct access to God on behalf of the needs of others. Each and every day, take time to bring the needs of those you know up to God. Carry the names of your friends, family, enemies, and all neighbors on your heart as you go before God. Be the priest of God for the people. God can use you through your prayers.
I pray today that you will know who you are in Jesus; that you will have the names of people on your hearts as you pray to God; that you will lift up the needs of others before God daily; and that God will do many great things through you in others.
Then the man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.” Genesis 32:28
There are people who are quick to fight for something that they want. They will do whatever it takes to get it. Sometimes this fight or battle is driven by greed. They want more and more at the expense of everyone else and they don’t really care. They want to be bigger and better than everyone else and so they are willing to step on and crush others to get it.
While some are willing to step on others, there are some who just aim for the highest. They don’t want to crush anyone, they just want the best.
At the same time, there are others, who will not strive for anything more than what they have. They have no dreams or visions and do not fight for anything more than what they already possess.
As Jacob had been traveling along, getting ready to meet his brother Esau, who had parted on angry terms when last seen, when an angel or a man of God had come to him. Jacob wrestled with the man all night. Jacob realized this man was from God and wanted something from him. In the end the man states that Jacob had wrestled and won, so he changes Jacobs name.
There are times a believer must grab onto God and hold on tight for a blessing or a change. Many times believers will pray for something once, and then give up. They do not wrestle with God for an answer or a blessing. God may sometimes want to see how much the person really wants something from Him. How much is he willing to give, in order to get God to give?
Just as Jacob faced a life and death situation in his life, you may be facing some life threatening situation. Run to God and grab onto Him. Do not let go in seeking His favor and His answer to the situation.
This time of holding on is a time of wrestling and struggle. It pulls you away from things in this life, but it also turns your focus back onto God alone. It is a challenge to keep holding on and trusting God, however, in the end you will see God’s hand at work in your life and His blessings.
I pray today that you will seek God with all of your strength; that you will hold on to God’s promises for your life; that you will know the blessings of God in your life; and that you will see God’s favor in your life.