By Charles Stanley
READ | Genesis 25: 27-34
Scripture confirms that the familiar expression, “You reap what you sow,” is accurate (Job 4:8; Prov. 11:18). Esau learned this truth the hard way. Famished, he returned from hunting and requested a bowl of the stew his brother was cooking. Jacob seized upon the opportunity—he agreed to share the food in exchange for his older twin’s birthright.
In Old Testament times, the firstborn enjoyed special privileges, which included authority over younger siblings, a double share of the inheritance, and the honored position as spiritual leader over the family. Yet Esau, deciding that food was more of a necessity right then, traded his birthright for dinner. He later grieved to realize what was lost, but at that point, it was too late. Like Esau, we all face critical choices at times. While God offers forgiveness for poor decisions, the consequences remain. So we must learn how to choose wisely.
We should take to heart two warnings from this story. First, to be able to distinguish our best options, we should wait until we are physically, emotionally, and spiritually stable. Esau allowed hunger to cloud his thinking.
Second, it is often important to delay gratification. For example, though a person may be eager to purchase a car, it is wise to shop around for the best deal. Though our human desires feel overwhelming at times, we should prayerfully wait for God’s timing.
Think about the longings that you have. Pray for wisdom and patience so that you can make godly decisions during critical times.