As we know from reading the story (Genesis 39:11-20), Joseph suffers because of his principled decision. Joseph is thrown in prison. As Potiphar’s property, Joseph could have been killed on the spot, no questions asked. Potiphar obviously didn’t believe his wife but had to guard his reputation by taking action. And yet, despite the horrific circumstances, Scripture says, “the LORD was with Joseph” (Genesis 39:21).
Life on planet earth isn’t fair. Good is not always rewarded, and evil is not always immediately punished. There is some good news though: Joseph can find rest, even in prison, because God is with him. In prison he could have meditated on the unfairness of his situation, withdrawn, and even given up on God.
What does Joseph do while in prison? How does he relate to those around him? Read Genesis 39:21-40:22.
In prison, Joseph works with the real, not the ideal. He networks; he helps others, even though situations in prison were far from the ideal that he must have wished for. And Joseph is not above asking for help and making himself vulnerable. He asks for help from the cupbearer when he interprets his dream.
What is the big picture perspective on relationships that Paul presents in Ephesians 6:1-13?
Our relationships are miniature reflections of the great controversy between God and Satan that is raging through the ages. This means, then, that there are no perfect relationships. Every relationship must have growth dynamics, and Satan has a vested interest in using all our relationships — especially those closest to us — to his advantage in order to hurt and frustrate God’s will for our lives. We can be thankful that we are not left to fight these battles on our own. God’s Word sets out principles for our relationships. His promise to give us wisdom (James 1:5) also extends to our relationships. And as He was with Joseph, He promises to be with us when our relationships prove complex.
|Think about God’s promise in James 1:5, and take a moment to pray for wisdom in your relationships. How can you seek to be open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit as you relate to these people?|
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