Genesis 41

Genesis 41:16

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“Joseph answered Pharaoh, ‘It is not in me; God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer.'”

Pharaoh asks if Joseph will be able to interpret his dreams and Joseph says that God will answer Pharaoh’s request. Rather than taking credit for the previous interpretations, Joseph is quick to give credit to God. He relies on God rather than his own abilities, though it would have been easy to take credit in hopes that doing so would free him from prison.

We too need to rely on God rather than ourselves- even when it seems like God isn’t doing anything. Joseph sat in prison for two years waiting for God to help him. We may be waiting, but we can never wait too long for God’s perfect timing.

LORD, help me to lean on You for every need at every moment. In myself, I am incapable of success, but with you anything is possible.

This Week’s Reading Schedule:

2/6: Genesis 39-40

2/7: Genesis 41

2/8: Genesis 42-43

2/9: Genesis 44-45

2/10: Genesis 46-47

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Genesis 37

Genesis 37:10

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“But when he told it to his father and to his brothers, his father rebuked him and said to him, ‘What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you?'”

Joseph shares his second dream with his family though the first merited their disdain. Even his father who favors him rebukes him as a result.

It can sometimes be difficult to share the truth with others, especially when that truth is unpopular. But by Joseph’s example, we ought to share it lovingly. In his case, the facts were enough for his family to analyze them; he didn’t have to spell out the meaning of the dreams. Joseph believed his visions were from God and he didn’t back down when God prompted him to speak. Neither should we.

LORD, give me courage like you gave Joseph to speak truth. Help me to have confidence in my identity in You and what You speak to me.

Next Week’s Reading Schedule:

2/6: Genesis 39-40

2/7: Genesis 41

2/8: Genesis 42-43

2/9: Genesis 44-45

2/10: Genesis 46-47

 

Genesis 33 & 35

Genesis 33:4

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“But Esau ran to meet him and embraced him and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.”

Jacob fears his reunion with Esau, but he is surprised to encounter Esau with such love and forgiveness.

When people wrong us or even suggest doing so, we have the tendency to think their actions are who they are and that they won’t change. But Jacob prayed to the LORD; he wrestled with God for a blessing, and in this passage we see his faith rewarded. Esau has changed and is eager to welcome his brother back after much discord- even though Jacob wronged him! People can change, but we have to give them opportunities to show us rather than writing them off.

LORD, help me to see people like You do. Help  me to truly love others and to believe in second chances and changed hearts.

Next Week’s Reading Schedule:

1/30: Genesis 27-28

1/31: Genesis29-30:24

2/1: Genesis 31-32

2/2: Genesis 33 & 35

2/3: Genesis 37

 

Genesis 31-32

Genesis 32:9-10

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“O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, I am not worthy of the least of all the deeds of steadfast love and all the faithfulness you have shown to your servant.”

In this passage, Jacob praises God for His provision and requests protection when he encounters Esau. He recognizes that he has done nothing to merit God’s favor, but he also remembers how God has been faithful to his ancestors.

In sharp contrast, entitlement is rife in our modern culture. We think that we deserve the best for no particular reason and that when something doesn’t go our way we’ve been wronged. We fail to recognize our dependence on God and all the blessings He has given us. Perhaps even worse than this, we are servants to our gratification rather than servants of God. Like Jacob, we must acknowledge that we don’t deserve God’s blessings and give Him praise

Lord, help me to stop to thank You for what You’ve done for me before asking for more. Help me to recognize that I don’t deserve anything, but that all I have is Yours.

This Week’s Reading Schedule:

1/30: Genesis 27-28

1/31: Genesis29-30:24

2/1: Genesis 31-32

2/2: Genesis 33 & 35

2/3: Genesis 37

Genesis 29-30:24

Genesis 30:1-2

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“When Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, she envied her sister. She said to Jacob, ‘Give me children, or I shall die!’ Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel, and he said, ‘Am I in the place of God who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?'”

Rachel envies her sister for giving Jacob sons. This envy stirs up strife between Jacob and Rachel, causing him to blame God for her barrenness.

In the midst of sinful thoughts, it is imperative that we call on the LORD for help. Rachel fails to do this. The result is further issues, namely marital discord and subsequent sin when Rachel offers her slave to Jacob in order to produce a son her her. When we don’t call on the LORD for help, our troubles escalate and we often put ourselves in even worse circumstances.

LORD, help me to recognize my need for You and Your willingness to help me. Rather than letting pains fester, help me to learn to call on You in times of weakness and uncertainty.

This Week’s Reading Schedule:

1/30: Genesis 27-28

1/31: Genesis29-30:24

2/1: Genesis 31-32

2/2: Genesis 33 & 35

2/3: Genesis 37

Genesis 27-28

Genesis 28:20-21

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“If God will be with me and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat and clothing to wear, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace, then the LORD shall be my God.”
Though the LORD has appeared to Jacob in a dream, Jacob vows to serve Him after he returns home. He fears that the LORD won’t follow through on His promises.

Even though the LORD has promised us the presence of His Holy Spirit and guidance, we continue to make deals with Him. If You do this for me, I will serve You. How foolish we are to make demands of the most High God as if He owes us proof of His goodness and His very existence. Our lives are proof of His provision. If we seek Him, we will see so many instances of His protection, guidance, and love.

LORD, You deserve my complete devotion and utter submission. You don’t have to prove anything to deserve it. Help me to trust You more and to remember Your faithfulness.

This Week’s Reading Schedule:

1/30: Genesis 27-28

1/31: Genesis29-30:24

2/1: Genesis 31-32

2/2: Genesis 33 & 35

2/3: Genesis 37

Genesis 25:19-34; 26

Genesis 25:31

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“Jacob said, ‘Sell me your birthright now.’ Esau said, ‘I am about to die; of what use is a birthright to me?'”

Though Esau knows of God’s covenant with Abraham to bless the family line, he focuses on his more immediate needs.

We can lose sight of long-term goals to satisfy short-term needs. Esau knew God’s blessing was on the family line-which transferred to him as the eldest-but he dismissed the promise for a bowl of soup. It sounds ridiculous, but we do that too. We know that God promises us joy in a covenant marriage, but we are prey to fleshly desires. We know that He promises we will find Him if we seek Him, but we get lazy and turn to social media for distraction instead.

Lord, give me perspective and patience to hold out for Your promises. They are so much greater than the whims my flesh desires. Only You satisfy.

What grabbed your attention in today’s reading? Can you relate with Esau, or more with Jacob? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Next Week’s Reading Schedule:

1/30: Genesis 27-28

1/31: Genesis29-30:24

2/1: Genesis 31-32

2/2: Genesis 33 & 35

2/3: Genesis 37