God can show up any time, any place, even in the middle of nowhere!
Tell about a fond memory of when things turned out better than you expected. How do you feel each time you revisit that memory?
When our backs are against the wall, things are falling apart, and all hell seems to be breaking loose we must go back to where we encountered God. The place that He found us. Remembering where and how we were will cause us to rejoice after we realize God met us in the middle of nowhere. God won’t give up on us. God told Jacob to go back to Bethel, the place of his greatest encounter. Bethel represents a place of remembrance, a place of revelation, a place of response and a place of removal. God is always there, we are never alone even if we were not aware He was there.
Read Genesis 28:10-13.
Jacob receives one of the greatest revelations in all of the Bible. God meets Jacob in a dream.
1) Jacob was running from his brother and thought he had found a place to rest for the night. He didn’t realize God was about to find him. He was in transition, he owned nothing and was in the middle of nowhere. God made a great revelation to him through a dream. Discuss your view of this dream. How do you think Jacob felt?
2) Angels were both descending and ascending the ladder that bridged the earth and heaven. Why is it significant that angels were able to travel both directions?
3) God is at the top, He is above all that is happening. Why is this important?
4) God reveals who He is and His future blessing on Jacob’s offspring. Why do we need to know who God is? Why does He bless us?
Read Genesis 35:1-7
5) Jacob is almost 100 years old when God tells him to go back to Bethel. Before he goes there to build an altar to God He is asked to do something, what is that?
6) Why is it important to remember where we were when God found us?
7) Sometimes God shows up and we don’t even know it. Why do you think this is?
8) An encounter with God will result in a response. Think about your greatest encounter with God, how did this result in your responding?
9) God told Jacob to bring his family with him back to Bethel. Why is it important to introduce his family to God and show where he encountered God?
10) God tells Jacob to dwell there. God knows that as humans it is easy for us to forget. What do you think is the reason Jacob was instructed to dwell there?