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26th January 2023


Stay the course, Finish well

We are looking to Joseph as an example of how to stay the course & finish well in our Christian pilgrimage.
Joseph endured prolonged suffering & injustice but was miraculously promoted by God to bring deliverance in a time of great famine.
Joseph stayed faithful to the Lord through many dark times & developed TOTAL integrity, humility, trust & forgiveness.
Today we will look at his integrity. Integrity is doing the right thing even when no one else knows or is looking.


Now Joseph was handsome in form and appearance. And it came to pass after these things that his master’s wife cast longing eyes on Joseph, and she said, “Lie with me.” But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master does not know what is with me in the house, and he has committed all that he has to my hand. There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” So it was, as she spoke to Joseph day by day, that he did not heed her, to lie with her or to be with her. Genesis 39: 6-10


Because of the Lord’s favour & the gifts God had graced him with Joseph was highly successful in managing Potiphar’s household.
So much so that his master trusted him with all he had. Nothing in the house was held back from him except (quite rightly) Potiphar’s wife.
Potiphar’s wife had a very different agenda though. She was struck by Joseph’s good looks & repeatedly tried to seduce him.
Joseph never gave in to the temptations & he stood firm against the repeated seductions.
When it became necessary he fled (Genesis 3:10-23). Flee from evil, idolatry & sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 6:18, 10:14; 1 Timothy 6:11).
His integrity stood firm because he kept his heart right, clean & pure before God.
He would neither sin against God or betray & wrong his earthly master in this matter.

Joseph had learnt to live before the audience of One. Pleasing the Lord was the chief desire of his heart.
Rejecting the advances of Potiphar’s wife cost Joseph dearly – imprisonment through the injustice of false allegations.
Thirteen long years in a prison cell did not lead his heart to become polluted with bitterness & revenge.
Because of his integrity in this private matter the Lord could trust Joseph in the public arena.
Private battles will always precede public victories. What we overcome in private will be manifest in the public arena. SELAH
When the time for promotion came Joseph was ready & his integrity remained intact. (No skeletons in this cupboard!!!)
He was able to govern through that integrity & navigate the nation of Egypt through a severe & prolonged famine.
A man of integrity governing with integrity brought great blessing for the nation (Proverbs 14:34).
O how we need such leadership, right around the globe, in these days!!!

On the path & race that is set before us may we be those who walk with integrity (Proverbs 10:9, 11:3, 20:7).
Integrity is caring more about the hard truth or difficult moral act than the easy lie or selfish, sinful impulse.
It says this far & no further & sticks to the God-given boundaries. It is living in the light even amid the deepest darkness!!!
It is the proper practise of our values & godly principles rather than just believing & talking about them.
It is maintaining a standard before the Lord no matter what the cost.
Integrity is the great illuminator of who & what you really are. It reveals the distinctive & hallmark of your character.
It is also the reason why none of the allegations & false accusations against Jesus would stick at His trial (Mark 14:56).
Made in the image of God we are those who are designed & destined to walk with integrity. As for the Master so for His pupils.
May we walk & persevere with integrity to honour & glorify the Lord.


For Reflection

  • In what ways & which areas of my life am I truly comfortable living before the audience of One?
  • Does the integrity I exhibit reveal Christlike character in me?
  • Meditate upon what it means to walk in integrity.

A song related to this theme:


Prayer

Heavenly Father,
Thank you that You are constantly with me & Your grace surrounds me,
Thank you that Your favour & gifts ever make room for, & forge a way for, me.
Jesus thank you that You are my model & Master,
Draw me deeper to You & make me more & more like You.
Holy Spirit help me to discipline & guard my heart,
So that I might walk with integrity & ever remain in your light.
This I ask In Jesus mighty Name.
Amen

Written by Gareth Jones

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