In Good Times and Bad

Greetings In the Name of the Lord:

 Genesis 39:3, 21 (NLT) 

3 Potiphar noticed this and realized that the LORD was with Joseph, giving him success in everything he did…21 But the LORD was with Joseph in the prison and showed him his faithful love. And the LORD made Joseph a favorite with the prison warden.

We have the mistaken notion that when things are going well that God is with us, but when things are going against us He is not. The life of Joseph is a classic example from Scripture that God is with us in the bad times just as much as He is the good times. In case you are not familiar with the story, Joseph is his Dad’s favorite, which causes his brothers to be extremely jealous of him. So they hatch a plan to kill him, but one of his brothers, Rueben, tries to protect him and convinces them to throw him in a well instead. However, while Rueben is away the others decide to sell Joseph to a caravan headed to Egypt. Now Joseph finds himself as a slave to a high Egyptian official name Potiphar. While in Potiphar’s service, the official notices that the Lord is with Joseph and makes him in charge of his entire household. This is a sweet job and Joseph does it well. This is the good times, and as we can see from Gen. 39:3, the Lord was with him during this good time. However, Potiphar’s wife takes a liking to Joseph for another reason, and want Joseph to sleep with her. As a righteous man, Joseph refuses because it would not only be a sin against Potiphar but also a sin against God. Unfortunately, Potiphar’s wife doesn’t give up easily, and she tries to seduce Joseph. Yet Joseph still refuses to sin with her and runs away, but she grabs his clothes and tears them off of him in the process. She then accuses Joseph of rape. Potiphar comes back and believes her story and throws Joseph in jail. This would be the bad times, but as we can see from Gen. 39:21, the Lord is with him also while he is in jail. What do we learn from this? The Lord is with us in the bad times as well as in the good. We need to learn to do what James tells us, “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy” (James 1:2, NLT). You see, my friends, the Lord is with just as much in the bad times as He is in the good times. We need to learn to ask the Lord what He is trying to teach us from the bad times instead of assuming that He has abandoned us in them. What is God trying to teach you today?

In Christ,

Pastor Mark

 

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