Blessed to be a Blessing

Shalom Precious Child of the Living God,
When I think of you I cannot but give thanks to the Almighty for your faith, your love for God and His people, but most importantly for your resilience and your importunity.  The devil has employed circumstances and people (close friends and family as well as distant acquaintances and colleagues) to try to derail your faith. You have however refused to be moved because you are like a tree planted by fresh springs. Admit it; were there not times earlier this year that you thought you would not make it? Yet the first half of the year has now gone past and you are not only still standing, you are standing strong. Okay, I know some of you are saying “I am only just surviving and I don’t think I can take anymore!” Others are saying “Even if I can take more, why is God continuously putting me through the wringer as though He enjoys seeing me suffer!”

THREE POTENT SCRIPTURES
Nothing could be further from the truth. Remember God is good and there is no evil in Him. Jesus reminds us in Luke 11:13 that if we as human beings who have a propensity for evil know how to give good gifts to our children, how much more will our Heavenly  Father give not just good things, but even His Holy Spirit to us His children when we ask.
Three scriptures have been strong on my heart this season and they will help you align with God’s perspective. The first one is Jeremiah 29:11 in which God assures us that He knows the thoughts He has concerning us: they are peaceful not evil thoughts and they have the capacity to project us into a future full of hope or as the KJV puts it, “an expected end”. So no matter what anyone else including my often deluded self thinks, I am guaranteed a bright future. The only One who commends a matter and it is always established, the only One who commands and it comes to pass has spoken good concerning my future and no one can annul it. Hallelujah! The second scripture is Proverbs 4:18 which assures us that the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn which shines brighter and brighter until full day. This is such a glorious encouragement that things will only get better in your life. Your today must of necessity be better than your yesterday and your tomorrow will definitely supersede your today. “Oh, no, no, no!” I hear some of you protest, “This has not been my experience as I can only look back from the place of today’s terrible experiences at the good old days”.  The third scripture will throw more light on how things really stand. Paul tells us in Romans 8:28 that we know that for those who love God and are called according to His purpose, all things work together for good.

“THE LORD WAS WITH JOSEPH”
The central theme of Genesis 39 is “The Lord was with Joseph”. Our warped modern-day comfort and prosperity theology dictates that if God is with us we should have a smooth ride through life and the only good days are the trouble- free days. God’s perspective however is that on a good day, you go through whatever obstacles life throws at you victoriously because The Lord is with you. He permits the good, the bad and the ugly to assail you but only if at the end of it all there is good in it for you. So as you go through trials and tribulations rejoice and leap for joy because there is double for your trouble, restoration for your desolation, succour for your horror and blessing for your stressing. We are told several times that The Lord was with Joseph and as a result God caused everything that he did to prosper.

SO HOW COME EVERYONE BUT ME, IS SEEING THE BENEFITS?
Potiphar and indeed everyone else around Joseph all seemed to benefit from Joseph’s blessedness. There are two obvious reasons for this. The first is that the central purpose of God’s blessing upon anyone, is so that they may become a blessing. The Abrahamic Covenant is notable not just because God guarantees Abraham that He would make of him a great nation, but that He would also bless him and make his name great, ”so that you will be a blessing” (Genesis 12:2 English Standard Version). Peter concurs when he tells us that we are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation and a people of God’s own possession. To what end are we so wonderfully exalted? To show forth or declare God’s blessings, praises and magnificent works. The second reason is because God has better things in store for you than where you are and what you could get today. According to one of God’s central principles seed time and harvest will never fail as long as the earth remains. The last time I checked, the earth was still in place. Father Lord said it is more blessed to give than to receive. At any point in your life therefore, you are either sowing or reaping what you sowed in the past. Potiphar’s house was not Joseph’s final destination. It was just another field, a sowing ground for Joseph to plant the blessings, the prosperity and the goodness of God. Remember that God admonishes us not to be deceived because He cannot be mocked and that whatever a person sows, that will he reap. So rather than complain that everyone around you is being blessed and you are not, consider that you are being given further opportunities to bless those around you and to continue to accumulate your storehouse of blessings waiting in your near future. It is through you, through me, through the Church, the Body of Christ that God intends to save and bless the world. The prison was not Joseph’s final destination. It was yet another fertile ground for Joseph to cast his precious seed into. Remember that he who goes out bearing “precious seed” will without doubt return bearing the sheaves of harvest (Psalm 126:6). Joseph was headed for the palace and prime ministership and he was going to bless everyone and everything on his way there. God even has a bottle where your tears have been stored against a day of remembrance (Psalm56:8).

THE FRUIT OF THE RIGHTEOUS
I promised you last month that I would tell you something interesting about the Demoniac of the Gadarenes who was delivered by The Lord Jesus. In Mark5:20 the last we hear of this man was that he was preaching in Decapolis. Two chapters later, in Mark 7:31 we see Jesus visiting that area. Though it appears He had never been to that area His reputation had preceded Him and a deaf-mute was brought to Him to be healed. How on earth did people who had never met Him know what He was capable of? Their kith and kin whom they had known to be hopelessly deranged and now an Evangelist told them. They were so confident that if such a hopeless case as his could be healed and delivered, then the deaf- mute was literally child’s play. This man recognised that his deliverance was not just for him but to bring many to the knowledge of the saving grace of the Christ.
Joseph was a blessing wherever divine providence led him: he was a blessing at home; a blessing in Potiphar’s house; a blessing in prison; a blessing in and to the entire nation of Egypt; and indeed to the fledgling nation of Israel.

CONCLUSION
I am very encouraged. My life is not an accident and truly God is with me. So even when I go through the fire and the flood, I will still be a blessing because I am blessed. Wherever I go and to who so ever I am sent I cannot but be a blessing. I may not see my blessings immediately but I am casting my bread upon the waters and after many days, it will come back to me. My seed awaits me in my glorious future. It’s all working together for my good. My path is shining brighter and brighter. My tomorrow will be better than my today. My best is yet to come. This is your testimony too, dear child of the living God.
Shalom.

As always, you are loved, precious and appreciated.

Pastor O.

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