Daily D – Genesis 39:2
The LORD was with Joseph, and he became a successful man, serving in the household of his Egyptian master. GENESIS 39:2 (CSB)
Joseph’s life is a success story. This chapter begins with success and ends with success. This chapter gives Joe two opportunities to give up on life. Circumstances beyond his control put him in dire straits. Temptation too great for the average man failed to sidetrack Joe.
Everything worked well in Potiphar’s house while Joe was in charge. (See verses 3-6.) Joseph was successful because of his integrity, character, wisdom, and work ethic. Potiphar did not worry about a thing except what he wanted for dinner (verse 6).
In the words of Andy Griffith from years gone by, Potiphar’s wife was a desperate female hunter. Joe was the prey. Joe did the right thing, turned, and ran away.
It is always interesting to ponder the proceedings here. Potiphar’s wife put the moves on Joe. Joe got a move on out the door. Potiphar came home and heard his wife’s story. Joe ended up in prison, not dead. I wonder what went on in Potiphar’s head?
So far in Joe’s story, he has been despised by his brothers, threatened with death, sold to human traffickers, sold as a slave to Potiphar, and unjustly imprisoned. What’s your story?
Joseph in jail has these words written about him: “But the LORD was with Joseph and extended kindness to him. He granted him favor with the prison warden,” (verse 21). Favor? Favor sounds more like, “And the prison warden saw that Joe was innocent and released him.”
God’s favor, however, is always about the next guy. Like God’s blessings, it is always given so that it may be passed along. What happened next? “The warden put all the prisoners who were in the prison under Joseph’s authority, and he was responsible for everything that was done there. The warden did not bother with anything under Joseph’s authority, because the LORD was with him, and the LORD made everything that he did successful,” (verses 22 and 23).
Joseph lived a life God could bless even when he was mistreated, when he was a slave, and when he was a prisoner. God blessed him and made him a blessing.
If you in your story are not where you want to be, how will you live a life God can bless and make a blessing to others? The way up sometimes involves some steps down. Jesus said some things like that, didn’t he?
When our daughter was in college, she had some friends who did not respond well to the challenges of living on their own. She wisely observed, “They have never had any problems.” Problem-free living is not nearly as instructive as overcoming difficulties by God’s grace and through his favor.
What problems do you have today? How can God use them to grow you and to serve others? How can God use these present circumstances to develop your integrity, character, wisdom, and work ethic? What are your next steps on the success journey?
I will live a life God can bless whether my steps lead down or up.
Our Father, lead me step by step. Empower me to live a life of integrity and character. Give me wisdom to make good decisions. Give me the work ethic to accomplish well all that is set before me. Give me success that honors you and serves others. Amen.
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Jonah 4:2, 3 So he complained to the Lord about it: “Didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, Lord? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. Just kill me now, Lord! I’d rather be dead than alive if what I predicted will not happen.”
Joel 2:12, 13 That is why the Lord says, “Turn to me now, while there is time. Give me your hearts. Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.” Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish.”
Hosea 14:8, 9 “O Israel, stay away from idols! I am the one who answers your prayers and cares for you. I am like a tree that is always green; all your fruit comes from me.” Let those who are wise understand these things. Let those with discernment listen carefully. The paths of the Lord are true and right, and righteous people live by walking in them. But in those paths sinners stumble and fall.”