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  • Writer's picturePs Stephen

Below the Waterline: Growing Maturity as Disciples (Joseph's Story)

Updated: Jun 20

Our families are often where we gather our values, beliefs, and inter-personal skills.

Gen 50:15-21

Your family, the critical self-talk, what others think does not define you.

I grew up in a good family. One of six kids, I’m number four. I knew I was loved, and my parents always provided for us, often sacrificing things for us children.

 

Our families are often where we gather our values, beliefs, and inter-personal skills. How we do conflict. How we value others. Who is God. Our work ethic. What family means. It is also where we often formulate our understanding of ourselves. The scripts that echo in our minds both positive and negative. Affirmations like you are beautiful. You are loved. You are a good worker. I am proud of you. But maybe also things like, if you work hard, I will love you. If you get good grades, you will be loved. You are less than your brother. I will never forgive you for the hurt you have caused.

 

We often carry these things through life. Sometimes, not even identifying them but only knowing their pain and their limitations.

 

Joseph grew up in a family that had its dysfunctions. A father and grandfather who had both lied to protect themselves or get ahead. Joseph’s father had stolen the birthright from his brother. Joseph was the favourite son, and the other brothers hated him, but it seemed his father didn’t care or didn’t see this brokenness in his family. But Joseph also saw positives as he grew up. The moment of great reconciliation between his father Jacob and his brother Esau. Joseph chose throughout his own journey of being betrayed by his brothers, imprisonment, and slavery, to build his identity and values not on what his family thought, but on God. He could say years later to his brothers who had almost killed him and sold him off to a life for many years in pain.:

 

Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” (Gen 50:19).

 

Your family, the critical self-talk, what others think does not define you. In Christ, you are a new creation, loved eternally. God is with you. Hold to that hope today.

 

God bless.


Pastor Stephen

 


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