In Genesis 28:11, we read that Jacob chose a stone (among many other stones that would have been available at that place). He chose the stone so that he can keep it under his head to rest. He saw that the stone was flat and of the right size.
In Corinthians 3:16 we read that the stone Jacob chose became the house of the Lord. Today we are the house/temple of the Lord. We have to be of the right size and fitting (spiritually) so that the Lord picks us up.
We should not be like the ones mentioned in Romans 1:29. We should cast away all the roughness from our lives. In Isaiah 59:1, 2 we read that we are solely responsible for our curse. The Lord is ready to bless us and use us. But we make ourselves useless via our sins.
As we read in 1 Corinthians 10: 4, 5 everybody ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; still the Lord was not pleased with most of them!
OK now lets get back to Genesis Chapter 28. If we read verses 18 and 19, we can clearly see three stages:
1. Jacob took the stone,
2. Set it up as a pillar, and
3. Poured oil on top of it.
Let’s analyze these three stages one by one.
Picked up the stone
(i) The Lord picked us up when we were dwelling in our sins (before salvation),
(ii) When we are in the church now, the Lord picks us up again so that we rise and shine for Him (and be involved in His ministry), and
(iii) The third picking up will happen when Jesus comes again.
If He wants to pick us up we have to be a smooth and a fitting stone.
Set the stone as a pillar
According to Romans 9: 17, the Lord wants to set us up as a stone so that He might display His power in us and so that His name might be proclaimed in all the earth.
At the same time we should not proceed to serve the Lord as per our own wish. As we read in 1 Corinthians 7: 20, 21 and 1 Peter 5: 6 we should humble ourselves under His mighty hand. We should remain in the situation God called us to.
We should stand firm in the faith until the Lord picks us up (1 Corinthians 16: 13).
Poured oil on top of the stone
In order to be able to pour the oil on top of the stone while he was on a journey, Jacob had oil with him in the first place! Oil represents Holy Spirit.
As we read in Romans 8: 9, we should have the Spirit of the Lord so that we are not be controlled by the sinful nature of the world. We must multiply our spiritual fruits.
We can survive the worldly life with our spiritual strength. But we cannot live our spiritual life with our worldly strength. As we read in 2 Timothy 1: 7, the spirit given to us is a spirit of power, love and self-discipline.
The Spirit of the Lord will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness (John 16: 8); when Ananias lied, the Holy Spirit convicted them (Acts 5:3).
Not just that, but when the Holy Spirit comes within us, we will become witnesses (Acts 1: 8). Before Holy Spirit was poured, Peter ran away from the Lord and denied Him. But after he received Holy Spirit, he preached boldly and 3000 men were saved that day.
Besides, Holy Spirit helps us in the following ways:
(i) To struggle against flesh and blood (Ephesians 6:12)
(ii) Help in our weakness (Romans 8: 26)
(iii) Blessing in our worldly life (Ezekiel 36: 29, 30)
Hope this doctrine behind the simple story of Jacob choosing a stone helps in your spiritual growth.