This chapter was one filled with great highs and lows for Jacob. God spoke to Jacob, God invited him back to his house to sacrifice and commune with him. Jacob saw God strike fear in the hearts of those who would be his enemies. Jacob saw his household all give up their foreign gods. Jacob worshipped God and fulfilled the vow that he made decades earlier. And God appeared to him, again and again, confirmed the covenant promises. Jacob also had another son. All of these were amazing experiences for Jacob. And Jacob remained true to God in these. But Jacob also saw the death of the beloved Deborah, the death of his precious wife whom he loved deeply, and the death of his father. He also found out that his firstborn son had betrayed him. All these things would be enough to crush the heart of Jacob. But God is not done yet. Jacob is still in the school of God and he has some more lessons to learn. You know what Jacob is going through. You’ve had those mountain top experiences where heaven feels so close and you are so excited you feel that you could conquer the world in the name of Christ. Often when we go to summer camp or a conference or some special church meeting we might have that feeling. But when we come home and reality sets in and people die and family and friends betray us we want to be like the prophet Elijah and run away. But it is in those moments when your Christianity is tested and proven to be true. Anyone can follow God when you can call fire down from heaven, but will you follow God when Jezebel is threatening to kill you. It’s easy to be a Christian at the concert, at camp, in the fun and exciting and special but what happens in normal life where people die and family hurts you, where you lose your job or you have to do the laundry again, or someone cuts you off on the highway? That is the true test of your Christianity. That is when your holiness is either displayed or shown to be lacking. That is the real Christian life. I’m afraid we in the American church have spent far too long pretending Christianity is only the mountain tops when it is almost always about the normal day-to-day.