By faith Jacob… worshipped…
leaning upon the top of his staff.
Why the words “leaning upon his staff?” Why this random information, when the big story is an aged Jacob blessing Joseph’s sons before he dies? There must be significance, I thought as I read.
Jacob was old and feeble, so this story is a painting: trembling, skinny arms reaching up to the top of a beautifully carved staff, flowing robes sliding to elbows, and a head of snowy white resting on the hands. He’s sitting, too weak to stand. But not too weak to do what he has to do, to give blessing to Jacob’s children before he passes. And then, overcome, deeply moved, for having given a blessing he never dreamed would happen because he never thought he would see his son Joseph again. Or find out Joseph had sons who would carry on as God’s chosen people. He sags in awe, relief, wonder, joy, thankfulness… and more. The be attitude that takes us to the presence of God.
I look into commentaries to see if the staff has some significance that I never learned about or had forgotten, and I discover disagreement about the staff, if it was truly a staff, or his bed, or both. A feeble man, rising up in his bed with the support of his staff, to perform his final act of blessing and worship.
What it was doesn’t really matter. This is the implication. A bowing of the head on a lowly staff in complete surrender to God’s will, a begging for blessing for his children and his children’s children, a final prayer of immense and intense gratitude for all blessings God bestowed during his long, eventful life.
A beautiful thing, this be attitude.
Blessed to be a blessing.
A life lived with gratitude, a life passing with blessings for the next generation.
The Bible in the card image was one of my father’s. A man who passed his blessings on to his next generations. He spoke in his last-days-feeble-voice as my niece was leaving his bedside one day, “Let’s keep on pedalling.”
A man who leaned upon his staff many times. Who began every prayer with “Our kind, gracious, heavenly Father…”
Today, I lean my head upon my staff, and thank God for the countless blessings He has showered upon my life.
I am blessed. I want the be attitude that brings wisdom.