Pentecost 9 – “I will not let you go until you bless me” – Jacob had good reason to ask for God's blessing, considering his history of cheating and swindling; and after he had wrestled with God until dawn, he was blessed by God. Wrestling with a serious problem and hanging on can bring blessing; and so can letting go, when the cost is too great.
No newcomer comes to church without hope of a blessing or a healing; and if church fails to practise what it claims, God and his blessing will be sought and found somewhere else, perhaps in a Sunday morning coffee shop where friends are accepted for who they are. God is in the world and is not limited to church; if relationships in a church become toxic, God will continue his work in the world and leave the church to its own devices. Genesis 32: 22-31