Seeing ‘the face of God’

The Biblical story of Jacob and Esau reaches a dramatic climax when the two brothers finally meet after many years apart. Through earnest prayers of repentance, Jacob is led to return to his homeland and face up to his earlier crime of stealing his brother’s inheritance. In return he is met by Esau’s unexpected and unconditional forgiveness. Elated that the rift between them has been healed, Jacob tells his brother, “I have seen your face, as though I had seen the face of God, and you were pleased with me” (Gen. 33:10, New King James Version).

It’s a touching story of brotherly love restored, and it started me thinking about what it means to see the face of God in someone. Can we see the face of God in everyone, or just a few? Am I seeing the face of God in all the people I meet? How do I do that?

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