God's sovereignty is a difficult thing to understand from a human perspective. While it is easy to just say that God has supreme authority over all things, when one examines how God exercises that authority, it is difficult to understand why God does things the ways that He does. It is true that God's thoughts are not like human thoughts and His ways are not like human ways, but when one examines the scriptures to see the ways that God accomplished His plans, it is hard to digest the ways that God is able to make something good out of the mess that human beings make.
In Genesis 30:1-24 the scriptures testify of Jacob's family growth. The Lord promised Abraham that he would be the father of a great nation, and the Lord built a major piece of that foundation through Jacob. The Bible explains in Genesis 30:1-24 that Jacob had 11 sons (he would ultimately have 12 in the end). That is a pretty large family. Considering the ways that people used to revere the births of boys during the times of Jacob, it must have been a great honor for Jacob to be the father of 12 boys. However, when one looks at the way Jacob's family was built, one can't help but cringe just a little. The circumstances that defined the making of this family were miserable and ugly; yet this was the family that God promised the Messiah would come from.
When one examines the testimony of Genesis 30:1-24 through the lens of God's promises to Abraham, the testimony of Genesis 30:1-24 becomes difficult to digest. God promised Abraham that His Anointed One, the Messiah, would bless all of the families of the earth through the blood line of Abraham. One would expect that God would choose the family of the Messiah to be spotless and pristine in quality. One would expect God to chose the highest of pedigree amongst the human race to birth the Messiah out of. Yet the scriptures do not describe Jacob's family to resemble this kind of family at all. Genesis 30:1-24 shows a family that is founded on jealousy, bitterness, competitiveness, sexual immorality, and strife. Nevertheless, God would use this family to accomplish His work.
The Bible explains that after Leah had her first 4 boys that Rachel began to get depressed and jealous. The scriptures explain that Rachel went complaining to Jacob, wondering why she couldn't bear children. Jacob, in his infinite compassion (sarcasm) simply told his wife that he was not God, and that her barrenness was her problem. In order to try to satisfy her craving to outdo her sister, Rachel instructed her husband (whom she as already sharing with Leah) to sleep with her maidservant Bilhah. The scriptures do not show that Jacob objected in the slightest, and so Jacob had 3 more sons through Bilhah. Upon seeing that Rachel's side of the family was growing, the competition between wives became more fierce. Leah was jealous of Rachel once again, but because she could not bear children for a time, she also had her husband, whom was regularly sleeping with 3 different women, sleep with her maidservant Zilpah, and she bore a son as well.
The scriptures go on to explain that over time, the competition between Rachel and Leah go so intense that they began negotiating deals on who would sleep with Jacob on a particular day. Genesis 30:1-24 explains that one day, Rachel negotiated a deal with Leah allowing Leah to sleep with Jacob for a time. Leah stated that Rachel had "hired" him by trading for mandrakes. This was the basis of this marriage. Thus, Leah conceived two more times and gave Jacob two more sons. This of course made Rachel jealous again, but she was finally able to bear a son of her own in the end.
The scriptures show that in the end, jealousy had led Leah to give Jacob 6 of her own sons: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun. The Bible shows that Leah's servant also bore Jacob one son named Asher. On the other side of the family, the Bible explains that Rachel's servant was able to give Jacob three sons: Dan, Naphtali, and Gad. Rachel eventually gave Jacob a son of her own and named him Joseph (Benjamin would be born years later and Rachel would die in child birth). At this point in scripture, Jacob has 11 sons, but if one considers the righteous standards of God, this family was hardly formed in a way that God would have been proud of. God commanded for one man and one woman to be joined together as one. Jacob had 4 wives and children with all 4. When Abraham and Sarah did the same thing with Hagar, God was hardly pleased with their conduct then, so there is little reason to think that God is pleased with Jacob's conduct in Genesis 30. The Bible explains that God is not pleased with jealousy, selfish ambitions, contentions, rivalry, and spite. However, the attitude that caused Jacob to have 11 sons was all of the things that displease God. To make matters worse, the Bible explains that as each woman gave birth and named her son, both Leah and Rachel attributed the birth of each son to the work of God as if God approved of their behavior. They were sorely mistaken and showed they had little understanding of who God was.
As one examines these truths, one must ask the question: Why did God chose such a messed up family if He knew the Messiah would eventually come from this bloodline. The conduct of Jacob's family is not really something that someone would be proud of if one is seeking to walk with God and be blameless as He instructs. What does this mean? This means that none are righteous, no not one. This means that God could have picked any family and there would have been drama equally as ugly. This means that no matter which family God would have selected to do His work, He would have to demonstrate power beyond human capacity to make something good of something that is clearly so messed up. The truth is that God made eternally unconditional promises to Abraham. God was not dependent on Abraham to fulfill His promises no more than He was dependent on Isaac, Jacob, Leah, or Rachel. God was going to do what God was going to do, no matter the extent of family issues. This is the extent of God's grace and sovereignty. Though this family was as messed up and filled with its fair share of drama, God would make something good come out of it. Though Jacob's family was clearly imperfect, God's power and sovereignty was such that He could manifest perfection out of it nonetheless. Part of God's amazing being is that He is not only Creator, but also Restorer. God is able to turn the mess of mankind into something as beautiful as the Son of God who died for the sins of the world. This is who God is.
The problems of mankind don't affect His ability or willingness to do good in the lives of His children because He is faithful to His promises. So while the condition of Jacob's family is far from praiseworthy, and far from qualified to bear the seed of Messiah, the scriptures show that God is not looking to use the "qualified" or "good" since there are none. Rather, God is looking to work within the mess of human life and restore it to a condition that resembles His own beauty and glory in order that He would be glorified. Praise God!