Thursday – September 5, 2013; Genesis 39:5-21

Now Joseph was handsome and good-looking. And after a time his master’s wife cast her eyes on Joseph and said, “Lie with me.” But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, with me here, my master has no concern about anything in the house, and he has put everything that he has in my hand. He is not greater in this house than I am, nor has he kept back anything from me except yourself, because you are his wife. How then could I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” And although she spoke to Joseph day after day, he would not consent to lie beside her or to be with her. One day, however, when he went into the house to do his work, and while no one else was in the house, she caught hold of his garment, saying, “Lie with me!” But he left his garment in her hand, and fled and ran outside.  When she saw that he had left his garment in her hand and had fled outside, she called out to the members of her household and said to them, “See, my husband has brought among us a Hebrew to insult us! He came in to me to lie with me, and I cried out with a loud voice; and when he heard me raise my voice and cry out, he left his garment beside me, and fled outside.”  Then she kept his garment by her until his master came home, and she told him the same story, saying, “The Hebrew servant, whom you have brought among us, came in to me to insult me; but as soon as I raised my voice and cried out, he left his garment beside me, and fled outside.”

When his master heard the words that his wife spoke to him, saying, “This is the way your servant treated me,” he became enraged.  And Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, the place where the king’s prisoners were confined; he remained there in prison. But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love; he gave him favor in the sight of the chief jailer.

Sometimes, even when we do the right thing, even if it is not our first choice, we do not the reward we may want or expect!

Doing the right thing is no guarantee that something great will happen for us; but that is not why we do the right thing any way is it?

If we do the right thing only to seek some sort of personal reward, we will be sorely disappointed,  No, we do the right thing, like raising our children, obeying the law, treating others well just because it is the right thing to do…and this is often our real reward, that we feel better about who we are, and see the benefits that doing the right thing gives to our children.

When my marriage ended, I could have chosen to be selfish and not take responsibility for my daughter, and instead gone on to pursue success in business, or simply moved away.  It might have been easier to live without this responsibility, but it would not have been the right thing for me to do, nor would it have been good for my daughter.  Instead, I chose to raise her as a full-time single parent.  It was difficult at times, and sacrifices were made, but there were also many moments of great joy and fulfillment as in many ways my daughter and I have grown up together.

By making the choice to be a single parent, I may have missed out on some success, and some financial gains, but in truth I gained riches far more valuable than money or success; I gained in wisdom, in faith, and in love!  Raising my daughter, gave me a deeper appreciation of what really matters in life, and it is not money!  It is spending summer afternoons at the swings, playing with dolls and stuffed animals for hours on a rainy, and sharing the wonder of daily life with her,

No, doing the right thing does not always guarantee that we will be rewarded with wealth or success in business, or that things will even turn out the way we would like; but doing the right thing has a far greater reward, for in doing the best we can for our children and ourselves, we are doing the will of God, sharing God’s grace with our children, and therefore, the world as well.

As we seek to do the will of God, and do the next right things, we are given the gift of clear hearts, and the satisfaction of knowing we have are taking care of our greatest responsibility and treasure, the lives of our children…our gift to the future!

Let us Pray:

God, thank you that your love is always with us, and that you share it through the love we have for our children, and the support of those around us.  Please help us to always do the next right thing…even if that thing does not have the results we would hope, and to remember that our reward is far greater than earthly wealth, but grows in our lives, and the lives of our children, as we move together towards adulthood.  Let us remember that our children are the true treasure that we are leaving for the future.

Amen

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