Now the Lord saw that Leah was unloved, and He opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. Leah conceived and bore a son and named him Reuben, for she said, “Because the Lord has seen my affliction; surely now my husband will love me.” Then she conceived again and bore a son and said, “Because the Lord has heard that I am unloved, He has therefore given me this son also.” So she named him Simeon. She conceived again and bore a son and said, “Now this time my husband will become attached to me, because I have borne him three sons.” Therefore he was named Levi. And she conceived again and bore a son and said, “This time I will praise the Lord.” Therefore she named him Judah. Then she stopped bearing. Genesis 29:31-35 NASB
I have watched people so very desperate to be loved that they find themselves enduring great shame or demeaning themselves to unfathomable depths. The need to have another’s affection and approval is profound within all of us. Poor Leah, wanted Jacob’s love so desperate. Even the naming of her children reflect her inner conflict and disappointment. Reuben = The Lord has seen, therefore surely my husband will love me. You can almost hear the hope and imagine the prayers she prayed. But, no! Then Simeon = The Lord has heard (that I am unloved). But, no! Levi = My husband will maybe not love me, but at least be ‘attached to me’, because we share these three sons. But, no! Lastly, Leah found and received unbridled love- from God Himself. She found satisfaction in His love, apart from that of Jacob. Judah = I will praise the Lord. She no longer was poor Leah, but rich in love Leah, for she had received the love of God and she knew it.
How content can I be with the love of God? How has He met my deepest needs? Can I find a greater capacity to love others, because He has first loved me?
God, as this day begins- I know I am desperate for love and affection, just like everyone else. Help me receive first and foremost Your love, so that I might love others with the overflow in my life. We have the opportunity today to gather with others for corporate worship and then to bless two families. May I represent You with grace and humility and power as I reach out and share Your great love.