I’M STUCK!!! (PART 3)
“And Joseph was brought down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites, which had brought him down thither. And the Lord was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the Lord was with him, and that the Lord made all that he did to prosper in his hand. And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand. And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field. And he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.
And it came to pass after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me. But he refused, and said unto his master’s wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand; There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God? And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her. And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within. And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out. And it came to pass, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and was fled forth, That she called unto the men of her house, and spake unto them, saying, See, he hath brought in an Hebrew unto us to mock us; he came in unto me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud voice: And it came to pass, when he heard that I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled, and got him out. And she laid up his garment by her, until his lord came home. And she spake unto him according to these words, saying, The Hebrew servant, which thou hast brought unto us, came in unto me to mock me: And it came to pass, as I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled out. And it came to pass, when his master heard the words of his wife, which she spake unto him, saying, After this manner did thy servant to me; that his wrath was kindled. And Joseph’s master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison.
But the Lord was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners that were in the prison; and whatsoever they did there, he was the doer of it. The keeper of the prison looked not to any thing that was under his hand; because the Lord was with him, and that which he did, the Lord made it to prosper.”
Yesterday, we spoke about the importance of maintaining fellowship during trying times. Without proper fellowship, you will feel like you’re on an island all alone. God created us to fellowship with Him. Though He didn’t need us to fellowship with Him, we surely need Him. Fellowship always rides on the back of faith. In our devotional today, we will discuss how to have faith during trials when your stuck in a tough spot.
III. FAITH DURING TRIALS
In our text today, we see the entire chapter of Genesis 39 as it applies to our lesson today. So what does this issue have to do with being stuck? More times that not, we will become involved in a situation where it requires us to display trust in and hope in something or someone. All too often, because we are unsure that we can deliver we will not trust another. Why is it so difficult to display faith during trials?
The Trials Are Usually Our Worst Fears Or Our Biggest Weaknesses – Joseph was sold into slavery as a young teenager. We can assure that he didn’t have the benefit of having a father figure to advise him of changes in his mind and body. So he endured a very trying time without the guidance of a loving family.
- Not Being In Control – Joseph was in a situation where he was in control of everything that he did or was evolved with but we see now that he wasn’t. He now depended upon a master to tell him when to do things and what to do. Sometimes in our lives we have a difficult time displaying faith when we don’t have firm footing in life. When our control is gone, most people will have a lack of faith.
- Not Knowing What Will happen Next – Joseph was in a situation where he was in a consistently changing environment. He probably had a routine but this lifestyle was something that was forced upon him which was foreign to him. Sometimes in our lives, we are forced into a particular situation which we aren’t familiar but have to make it work out. For instance, if your car breaks down on you in an unfamiliar town or place and you have to get it fixed. You know what you have to do but you don’t know how it will get accomplished or by the hands of what individual or where you will go to facilitate this action.
- Not Operating Inside Your Comfort Zone – Joseph was not accustomed to being under this much pressure to serve. Additionally, he found himself in a place where he had to show top notch compassion and kindness without a means to redress the ones that were potentially mean to him. His comfort zone was expanded to make him into more than he had ever been before. In our lives, we will, sometimes, get into situations where our comfort zones are dissolved. When most people operate outside of their comfort zones it makes them unsure and insecure. Faith is difficult to show when one doesn’t feel safe.
So having said all of this, how do we overcome these obstacles in our lives so that we are able to cling to faith and remember that God is still there for us?
- If You Can’t Steer The Ship – Joseph realized that he was no longer in control of what would happen to him but he did realize that he was in control of how he reacted. All too often we will try to steer the ship but we should remember that isn’t always possible! If I can’t steer the ship, at least I can control how I respond to the ride. I can also control what will happen in the worst case scenario. One cannot control or predict the future of a job but what you can control is the speed at which you receive an interview for the next job.
- Plan For Any Situation – We don’t see any evidence where Joseph made plans for the worst case scenario but we can infer from the text that he probably made mental notes of what he would do if, this or that occurred, that his actions would be this or that. How? Look at his environment! He was a slave. He was told what to do and when to do it and probably what to do if this happened. The most tragic thing that many Christians today fail to have is imagination. The reason why I say that is because many Christians are not only surprised by an event but they are both overwhelmed and overcome with anxiety. It’s strange that Christians spend so much time worrying about what will go wrong but when it does go wrong they spend just as much time hoping and wishing that it didn’t happen. How about praying that God gives you the grace to overcome your fears and the strength to walk through them.
- Work On Expanding Your Comfort Zone – What would have happened if Joseph never expanded his comfort zone? Would he had become the 2nd in command to Great Pharaoh? In our lives, one of the largest failures as a Christian is to stay in the confines of our protective bubble. What if Jesus never left Heaven? What if your parents never stepped out and never asked the other for a date and even to be married? Where would you be? A sinner will never get saved unless we step out of our comfort zones by faith and show them. Yes, this takes courage! The thing that I have heard from most people is that “That isn’t or me” or “That’s out of my comfort zone.” My response to this is that “Are you going to stand before God and tell Him that?” Besides, I think that it is wrong for one to expect another to leave their comfort zone for you and you’re not willing to at least try to for another. If you are waiting for this world to serve you when you aren’t willing to contribute then you may be waiting for a moment.
Faith is not an easy thing to show or even share with another when you can’t understand things yourself. However, God tells us in His Word that Faith is the very thing that pleases Him! Hebrews 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Faith is not fact or even fabric but it is something of substance in God. When we trust in God completely, the fact of faith is simply hope! Today as you walk with God remember that you may not understand everything but you can trust that God is leading you somewhere for your good. Trust the process when you don’t understand or even see the plan in action. This will please Him and encourage you. In tomorrow’s devotional we will cover what happens when God is silent during your toughest time. Join us again as we address real life issues with biblical answers on Worship With Willie.