Scripture Reading: Genesis 49:19-27
Although hated and “sorely grieved,” Joseph overcame his difficulties because his “hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob...Even by the God of thy father....” Joseph is an inspiration to all who have faith in the Lord. He inspires us because, regardless of the sufferings he was called upon to endure, sufferings that were not of his own making, Jospeh never seemed to lose his faith or his desire to please his lord. When shamefully entreated by his brothers, sold into slavery in Egypt and wrongfully accused by Potiphar’s wife, he continued to be faithful. When forgotten by those he ministered to while in prison, causing him to have to remain in that prison for an additional two years, he continued to serve the Lord faithfully. Because of his faithfulness, God continued to bless him in all of his circumstances.
Remember, Joseph’s days of difficulty lasted for thirteen years. These were not mere overnight times of suffering. What a challenge this is to you and I! God may choose to allow us to endure struggles in our lives. He may take us through experiences that we would prefer not to have to endure, but God always knows what is best. Like Joseph, regardless of the path we are called upon to trod, we should endeavor to be faithful to him in all our situations. God certainly blessed Joseph for his faithfulness, but this was not the reason Joseph was faithful. He did not walk faithfully so that God would bless him. He did so because he loved his Lord. When the three friends of Daniel were facing death by fire, they answered the king in the following way; “...our God whom we serve is able to deliver us...and He will deliver us out of thine hand, o king. But if not...we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the image which thou has set up.” (Daniel 3:17,18) Their’s was a Joseph type of faith, the type of faith that loves and serves God, not for the possible blessings, but because of Who He is and what He has already done. May God grant us to have that kind of resolve to faithfully serve our Lord!
Pastor Steve Smith