He was deeply loved by his father (evidenced by the coat of many colors he received) but envied by his brothers. Hoping his brothers would share in his excitement, he boldly recounts his dream but is unfortunately met with heightened animosity. Sold to slavery and forgotten by his older brothers who were supposed to care for him, Joseph could have been justifiably angry and bitter for the rest of his life. One can only imagine the possible mental health issues emanating from such rejection. There is no greater pandemic than one where your family “leaves you out in the cold”.
Just when he thought things were looking up for him, he finds himself trapped in prison for doing the right thing. This time, there appeared to be no way out; for who was going to take his word over that of Potiphar’s wife? Notwithstanding, Joseph maintained the right attitude. He knew he had a gift for the interpretation of dreams and he remained focused. So with God’s favor still in tow, while at a “dark place”, he continued to serve others for many years. It is this humble service to others that became the gateway to his promotion. Each time I recall Joseph’s story, it challenges my faith. I glean 2 main lessons from this:
God’s favor can still be upon you even in a dark moment or place in your life
Use what you have to make a difference while waiting for the things you don’t have. Your promotion is tied to your attitude and service to others
There have been career shifts, economic shifts and even relationship shifts these past few years. Some for good and some not so good. But whichever side of the aisle you fall on, there is always a reason to give thanks and maintain a positive attitude. It’s okay to be cognizant of what you need but don’t yet have, but it’s more important to focus on what you have and to give thanks. True gratitude is synonymous with humility, because you recognize that you didn’t achieve what you have by your own accord.
The 10 lepers
They were ostracized by society due to their infectious disease. Like a plague, the whole society shunned them. The life of a leper was definitely a hard one. Suddenly, Jesus Christ cures them of their illness and gives them a rare chance. They can now re-integrate into society, pursue their dreams, reunite with their families and loved ones and do all those things they once couldn’t get to due to their health predicament. The irony is that only 1 out of the 10 who had experienced this life changing miracle returned to offer thanks. It was quire shocking that Jesus had to ask where the other 9 were. It’s not that the lepers were not free to move on with their lives.
Surely, they had many things to catch up on , and that’s okay, but to forget to say ”Thank You” to the person solely responsible for their healing is unfortunate. It does not take much to say thank you. The 1 leper who expressed his gratitude didn’t hang around Jesus for long, he had to go on to other things. We lead extremely busy lives today with barely anytime to breathe. But while we are at it, let’s always remember to express gratitude to the one who heals, provides, sustains, protects and delivers. In good times and bad times, may we always take the time, and find countless reasons to thank God, the maker and giver of all things.
As for me, my gratitude list is endless, but let me just say that I’m grateful for health, great relationships, God’s unending grace, and the ability to write/publish.
Question of the day!!!!!!
What if you woke up each day having only the things you expressed gratitude for the previous day?