Don’t Be A Hirpler

16 12 2019

I was reading Oswald Chamber’s “My Utmost For His Highest” this morning, and I learned a new word: hirpler.

hirpler \ hirˈ plər \: one who walks with a limp or hobbles

Chambers wrote, “Always distinguish between God’s order and His permissive will… God’s order is unchangeable; His permissive will is that with which we must wrestle before Him.

Hebrews 11:21 speaks of Jacob… By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and he worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff.

Jacob seems to be best known as the guy who wrestled with God. The story is told in Genesis 32 that Jacob was about to meet his brother, whom he had deceived in the past, and he was terrified that Esau was going to kill him.

Jacob decides to spend the night alone and a man wrestled with him until daybreak. This man decides that Jacob is not going to stop, so he strikes his hip and dislocates it. I believe that at this point Jacob realizes that this is not just a mere man, but he still refuses to let go until this “man” blesses him.

The “man,” who Jacob now recognizes is God, changes his name to Israel, which means “he who struggles with God.”

I have always heard people teach that Jacob wrestling with God was a good thing. Certainly, good came out of it! God did bless Jacob for at least holding on, but I don’t think it was God’s perfect will (order) that he had to dislocate his hip to get to that point.

It is not God’s desire that we wrestle with Him. We are called to immediately submit to Him.

Jacob’s leaning on the top of his staff was not a badge of honor as some may think, but a sign that he had struggled with God’s plan for His life and not submitted to His will.

There are definitely times that we have to learn the hard way, but it is not God’s desire that we become a hirpler because of Him. We may end up limping spiritually because of things that have happened to us as a result of this fallen world, however we should never have to hobble around because we chose not to submit to God.

We should wrestle against sin in our life. We should wrestle in prayer for the lost. We should wrestle over our specific calling. We should never wrestle with God.

Jesus has commanded us to go and make disciples. That is His perfect will or order. As a follower of Jesus, we don’t wrestle against that command. We might wrestle in prayer over how and where we should complete this command, but we should not struggle against actually doing it.

God will dislocate my hip if I continue to wrestle with Him because He loves me. He will get His way and His glory with or without me, but His desire is to use me, as unworthy as I am. My prayer is that I can just simply follow him with open hands of submission without having to become a hirpler!



2 responses

16 12 2021

Just read this devotion this morning and didn’t know the meaning of ‘hipler’. Looked it up and was brought to your writing. Thank you for explaining a little more.
I think I’ve been wrestling with God. This devotion was for me today.

16 12 2022

Same happened for me today. Thanks!

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