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Male Validation

Genesis 26:34-35; 27:46; 28:6-9
34 When Esau was forty years old, he took as wives Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite. 35 And they were a grief of mind to Isaac and Rebekah.

46 Rebekah said to Isaac, "I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth; if Jacob takes a wife of the daughters of Heth, like these who are the daughters of the land, what good will my life be to me?"

6 Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him away to Padan Aram to take himself a wife from there, and that as he blessed him he gave him a charge, saying, "You shall not take a wife from the daughters of Canaan," 7 and that Jacob had obeyed his father and his mother and had gone to Padan Aram. 8 Also Esau saw that the daughters of Canaan did not please his father Isaac. 9 So Esau went to Ishmael and took Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham's son, the sister of Nebajoth, to be his wife in addition to the wives he had.

Many men deal with the "Esau syndrome." Without rehearsing all of Esau's story, early on he was willing to sacrifice the long term ("birthright") for immediate indulgences. Then once he realized what he lost, he spent the next season of his life trying to overcome his "failure" and prove his worth to those he felt he had disappointed - his father (giving away his birthright), his mother (bad marriage choices). He then complicates the issue by taking on more responsibility (a new wife). He never is at ease until he encounters Jacob. Something happens during these years that finally Esau is at ease with himself.

I don't know why we (men, or me) try to make up for past mistakes by going overboard trying to prove ourselves to others and gain their approval. Is is out of regret for past mistakes? Have we let our failures defines us so that we need others to validate us? At some point, each man has to grow up and find that he has God's approval, birthright or not, a wife from the right family or not, and learn to be comfortable in his own skin if we will ever be able to walk in the "blessing" (Genesis 33:4, 8-11)

Lord, help me to live with nothing to prove, comfortable with who you've made me to be and with what you are doing in me.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 13, 2004 12:00 AM.

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