Favor And Blessing

Genesis 39: 4-6, “So Joseph found favor in his sight and became his personal servant ; and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he owned he put in his charge. It came about that from the time he made him overseer in his house and over all that he owned, the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house on account of Joseph; thus the Lord’s blessing was upon all that he owned, in the house and in the field. So he left everything he owned in Joseph’s charge;….”

Responsible. Dependable. Punctual. Faithful. Committed. Industrious. Motivated. Trustworthy. Honest. Loyal. Hardworking. Selfless. Sacrificial. Serving. Any guesses as to who or what I am describing? Ok, I will give you a few more minutes. Look back over the list and think about it for a minute. The answer should be obvious. Joseph? No. Although most of these words are applicable, in this specific instance I am not thinking about him. Not yet, at any rate. Jesus? Sorry. That’s not the right answer either. Don’t get me wrong. He is certainly all of those things and much more but He is not the one I have in mind at the moment. Gonna give you one more guess…if you need a hint, go look in the mirror. Bingo!!! That’s absolutely right. The person I want to focus on today is ourselves. Hopefully, each one of those words is a fair and accurate description of both you and I. Especially as it relates to the work place.

Joseph was a man who experienced favor throughout his life. It had all begun with his father. Remember? He was his father’s favorite. Then we discovered that God’s favor also rested upon our young friend. It was revealed first in the dreams he received and then made evident through God’s hand of success. Finally, Joseph found favor in Potiphar’s eyes. Joseph’s life was marked by favor. But here’s the thing. As it relates to Potiphar, favor translated into more responsibility. Think about it. The harder Joseph works, the more work he is given. He enters Potiphar’s home as a young man, unable to speak the language, probably afraid for his life, but in time he is given responsibility for eveything the man owns. Not something that happened lightly. Joseph had demonstrated over time that he was a man worthy of responsibility. If you gave him a job, it was going to be done. He was everything that any employer could hope or ask for in regard to job performance. With Joseph on the job Potiphar was able to devote all his time and energy elsewhere. He knew that in Joseph’s hands his home and his fields were safe and secure.

I have preached for years that God’s children should be the best employees at their jobs. Period. Doesn’t mean we are necessarily the most knowledgeable or even the most skilled but it does mean that we are the best workers. At the end of the day our abilities and our responsibilities should equal a job well-done. All those things that were listed in the first paragraph should be par for the course when we show up and clock in. I know. I can already hear the excuses. I have wrestled with them all myself. “I hate my job. No one appreciates what I do. I am underpaid. My boss is the devil. I don’t feel fulfilled. My job lacks purpose. Nothing I do is ever good enough. The work never ends.”  I often have to remind myself that Joseph was a slave. That’s right, a slave. And he was still the best worker that Potiphar owned. Unpaid. No real future. Menial tasks. No hope of promotion. Joseph was a slave. But that didn’t keep him from being a blessing. Because he walked in divine favor he understood that he also had a divine responsibility. He had been given favor. He was responsible to be a blessing. My prayer is that each of us will follow his example. As the old saying goes, “We have been blessed to be a blessing.”

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