Summary: How does God want to change the “landscape” of your life? ?) How are you handling the blessings of added authority and/or privilege? Do you approach your current station in life with a purpose of integrity and a sense of stewardship?
God in the Ebb & Flow of Life:
Power & Responsibility
Scripture Text: Genesis 41.37-57
It was a day like no-other… A day in-which the circumstances of a man changed about-as-dramatically as-ever they could!
As we’ve followed Joseph’s life, …we’ve noticed the ebb-and-flow, high’s-and-low’s.
We’ve the special favor his father gave him ~ …only to see his brothers despise-and-hate him. We followed him in a slave-gang-caravan all-the-way to Egypt ~ …and to-be-sold to the captain of the Egyptian-guard. While-there, his status greatly-improved as Potiphar (his new owner) promoted him to chief-servant~ …only to have that violently-stripped from him as Potiphar’s-wife falsely-accused him; …And he ended up in prison-chains, …despised, …alone, …forgotten.
I. Changed Circumstances
But at each step along the way ~ …in-the-midst of the up’s-and-down’s, …all-along-the-way, God has been with Joseph; …and we’ve seen ripples of God’s activity, …and we’ve heard echoes of God’s promises to this young-man.
But, on this day, …the echoes rumble-like-thunder, …and the ripples rise-like-waves to sweep Joseph up from the dark-dungeon that he’s lived-in for more than two years! On this day, he is lifted-up, …drawn-out, …swept-in to a dramatically-different situation.
We can try-to-imagine some scenario in-which a person’s situation does-a-complete-180!… But Joseph experienced it in an amazing way on this day! His life has been a wave of high’s-and-low’s, up’s-and- down’s… But, nothing like this day!
He traded his prison-jump-suit for the fine-royal-linen. He turned in the shackles-and-chains, in-exchange for a golden-necklace. He resigned as the assistant to the prison-warden, …and he accepted the new position of Pharaoh’s right-hand-man!... It was a day to beat-all! It was a day when God shuffled-circumstances in startling ways. And in-it-all, I hear echoes. Do you hear them?...
Last-week, we heard echoes of God’s promises; …this-week, there are faint-echoes of all-the-people in in-the-past, who have tried to have-a-say about Joseph’s life: …like-when his father rebuked-him and said, “Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow down to the ground before you?” Or-when his brothers said (as they saw Joseph coming toward them in the field), “Here comes that dreamer!... Come now, let’s kill him.” Do you hear echoes of these-people and the things they said about Joseph!?!... Maybe you hear an echo of Potiphar’s-wife ~ …when she lied and falsely-accused Joseph because he refused to compromise and sin-against-God; Maybe you hear echoes of Potiphar’s condemning-word ~ …when he believed his wife’s lie, And Potiphar said-the-word and sent Joseph to prison; Maybe you hear all-kinds of echoes from voices in Joseph’s past ~ …echoes that now bounce-ironically and futilly off-the-walls of Pharaoh’s throne-room as Joseph is given ring and staff and chariot, and rank and power and authority and a golden-necklace!