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Integrity, Blessing and Vision

Words of Faith Final

Integrity, Blessing and Vision
Words of Faith 6-27-2022
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2022
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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Genesis 37
Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan.
[2] This is the account of Jacob.
Joseph, a young man of seventeen, was tending the flocks with his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives, and he brought their father a bad report about them.
[3] Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made a richly ornamented robe for him. [4] When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.
[5] Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more. [6] He said to them, "Listen to this dream I had: [7] We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it."
[8] His brothers said to him, "Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?" And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said.

Genesis 37 begins the story of Joseph. This is a story of remarkable integrity, blessing, and vision. While Joseph was not flawless (he was human!), he was nearly perfect in character and integrity.
While all the patriarchs have been shown to have flaws, lies, and sins, Joseph stands above the rest. Joseph is an example that someone can live in dependence upon God through the most challenging circumstances of life. He is an example that surrendering to the will of God can be a blessing even when it seems to make no sense. These chapters will serve as a definitive study of godly character and surrender.
The story of Joseph begins with a family in conflict. We are immediately aware of the animosity building in Jacob's house. The brothers (apparently all but Benjamin) hated Joseph for three reasons:
1) The honesty of Joseph. Joseph had brought a bad report about the brothers to his father. Joseph had told the truth about something, and the brothers did not want that truth exposed. The information was not a lie or a manipulation. As a person of character who honored his father, Joseph had to tell the truth. Joseph was not trying to gain favor. He was trying to be faithful. Truth-telling is not easy and often will create enemies.
2) The favor Joseph received. Jacob (Israel) loved Joseph more than any of his sons and made him a beautiful robe. The only explanation for this favor was that it was Jacob's choosing. This was completely beyond Joseph's control, yet this created jealousy among the brothers.
3) The Dream that God gave. God gave Joseph a dream about the future. Joseph was destined to be a visionary and leader. He was going somewhere, and he knew it early on. He was reassured that the hand of God was upon his life.
Integrity, blessing, and vision are three things that never bring popularity. Being a person of such character is usually costly! As a person of integrity, we will have to tell the truth at times when the truth is not popular. We will have to bring a report that others would like to hide. When the blessing of God is upon a person's life, there will always be jealousy, especially among the disobedient.
Blessing from God usually creates jealousy. Even if a person handles such a blessing with great care and humility, it can create friction in families and in the family of God.
Visionaries are rarely popular, especially before the vision has come to pass. Visionaries always have their detractors. They are easy targets for criticism because they can be labeled as "dreamers."
The opening of the story of Joseph sets the stage for what is to come, but it also gives us some reassurance. It will not be easy if we do God's will and follow him. Integrity is not easy. Blessing is not easy. Vision is not easy. In fact, all three are rather lonely, but there is no better place to be.
Are you struggling with the loneliness of walking with God? Be encouraged. God is with you. He sees your character and acts of integrity. He sees your faithfulness to the vision. His hand is upon you.

Father, I want only to walk with You in faithfulness and integrity. I want only Your vision for my life. Reveal Yourself to me. Stand with me in the unpopular times and lonely places. Let me find fulfillment in You. In Jesus' name.

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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2022
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)
2820 Business Center Blvd.
Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200
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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail, excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2022 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.