by Mary Vee
Laban ran to the well outside the city so fast, one would think his long lost friend waited there for him. "Jacob! Jacob! How wonderful to see you!"
Jacob looked closely at the man. "Uncle Laban? Is it really you?"
"Yes. Yes. I'm your uncle. Come here, let me look at you." Laban grabbed Jacob's arm and pulled him closer. He hugged him then pushed Jacob arm's reach away. "You look like our side of the family."
Jacob smiled. "Thank you, sir."
Rachel peeked out from behind Laban. Jacob laughed.
Laban turned to her. "Daughter. Shouldn't you take care of the flock?"
She bowed and nodded. "Right away, Father."
"Now, as for you, Nephew." Laban put his hand on Jacob's shoulder. "Gather your servants and come to our home. You are most welcome."
"Thank you." Jacob gave his servants instructions.
Laban stroked his beard and watched to see what Jacob had. I remember when Abraham's servant, Eliezer, came. He brought great riches for my sister's dowry. We became rather wealthy that day. I wonder what Jacob will give us for Rachel.
Laban led the way to his home. He ordered his servants to care for the camels then found suitable sleeping arrangements for his guest.
That night the dinner table had only the best foods. Jacob fit in rather well with the family. He joked and told stories as if he'd always lived there.
Laban laughed along with the others. He reminds me of myself at that age. Fun loving and, of course, respectful.
After the meal Laban walked with Jacob out in the fresh air. "Jacob, tell me your news. How is my sister?"
"Mother is well. Father struggles with bad eyes. He's rather old."
"Is that all you have to say, my nephew?"
Jacob lowered his head. "Well, no." He looked up at the dark sky. Thousands of stars twinkled. "I ran away from home. Well, no. I didn't actually run away from home because your sister, Rebekah, who is my mother, told me to come here." He rubbed the hair on the back of his neck. "Now that I think about it, Isaac, my father, also told me to come here."
Laban rubbed his eyes. "I'm confused. Didn't you come here to marry my daughter?"
"Well, yes. I mean, no. I mean, I did something mean to my brother Esau. I'm afraid it was so bad he'll surely kill me."
"You have a brother?"
Jacob groaned. "He's my twin."
Laban laughed and slapped Jacob on the back playfully. "So my sister told you to come here to hide, I see. She remembered!"
Jacob lowered his head then nodded. "Don't misunderstand. Your daughter, Rachel is very beautiful. I...I think..."
Laban stopped and faced his nephew. "Have you brought anything with you?"
Jacob shrugged sheepishly. "Just myself and my servants."
"That's all? No gifts?" It would be much easier to welcome him if he came with gifts. I can't believe Isaac sent him here without gifts. But if I must help this family member, I must.
Jacob closed his eyes for a second then said. "I'm sorry I don't have anything to give, but, I'd be happy to help with your work."
Laban sighed. "Oh, all right. You can stay." Laban walked back to the house mumbling. "I'm only letting you stay because you're my sister's son."
Laban seemed excited to see Jacob because he thought Jacob had wonderful gifts. Sometimes we are kind or helpful to people because of what we might get from them. God wants us to do kind things for others because we love Him. What could you do for someone that would not earn you a reward this week? Try your idea today. Click on the comment button to tell us what you could do. Then come back and click on the comment button to tell us what happened. I'm excited to see your answer:)