Rock & Roll
They don’t trust each other so they place a huge stone over the well to make sure that no one takes more than his share of water. They wait until they all gather and then they roll the stone and uncover the well. What happens next?
I refuse to go to Wal-Mart for a Thanksgiving sale. People line up for hours, and the second the doors are opened, rush through to grab all the items on sale. Last year, someone was trampled to death. Was there a Wal-Mart rush at the well once the rock was rolled away? Did they all wait until the last person finished watering his flocks so they could roll the rock back into place?
If they could manage the lines, once the rock was rolled away, why could they not figure out a better system?
If they could cooperate to the point that they would all patiently wait until the last person, even a young woman such as Rachel, finished watering her flocks, could they really not trust each other with a well? Why would they allow Rachel to use the well if she couldn’t help them with their rock rolling?
I picture them as people stuck in a pattern of behavior that no longer made sense. They all unthinkingly went along with established custom.
Their behavior patterns were the rock on the well. At least until Jacob came along.
He noticed the rock. It was huge enough for three shepherds to lounge on top of it. Jacob knew that they were waiting for help. He also knew that their lounging around was the strongest indication of their thinking. Haran would never be the same.
Jacob challenged their behavior, and they, just as we respond, became defensive. Jacob rolled that rock right off the well as an symbol of what he was going to do in Haran and every place he would visit over the course of his life, and as his children would do in every country and in every century.
Jacob was a rock roller, as we have been in order to survive the long exile. Jacob challenges us in every generation by asking: Are you loungers or rollers?
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