Friday, October 3, 2008

The Joseph Anointing, and the crazy God that I serve

Last week a co-worker forwarded an email to me. It was a spiritual perspective on the current state of the economy, and there were several prayer points it mentioned. One of them was to pray for a "Joseph Anointing" to be on business leaders and owners within the church.

If you don't know the story of Joseph, it can be found starting in Genesis 37. (The musical "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" is based on this Bible story, if that helps you get a frame of reference.)

Praying for a Joseph Anointing simply means praying for God to bless someone with the same characteristics and attributes that he gave to Joseph - wisdom, supernatural insight, administration, leadership, the ability to navigate an entire region (or business) through tough times, etc.

Ever since I got that email, I had been praying this over my husband, his boss, and their entire company.

It's been a really rough couple of weeks for them, so when I say that I've been praying, I mean that I've been praying BIG TIME! Mostly in the car, on my way to and from work. (Kaitlyn joins in sometimes.)

I often wonder if people think I'm crazy.

Maybe they think I'm arguing, or preaching, to someone on a cell phone.


When Mike called yesterday to tell me about the extent of the fire, you better believe that I started praying. As I prayed, God brought to my mind, once again, the story of Joseph.

One thing that has always made an impression on me is that from the time Joseph was 17 (Genesis 37:2) until he was 30 (Genesis 41:46) bad things kept happening to him. Just when he thought he had recovered from the last bad thing and life was starting to look up for him, a new (and worse) disaster would happen.

(Does this sound familiar?)

The last "disaster" occurred when Joseph was falsely accused of sexually harassing his boss's wife and he was thrown in jail. Even in jail, Joseph made a name for himself because of the administrative and leadership qualities he possessed, and most importantly, because of the blessing God had placed on him, as Genesis 39 mentions:
20 Joseph's master took him and put him in prison, the place where the king's prisoners were confined. But while Joseph was there in the prison, 21 the Lord was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden. 22 So the warden put Joseph in charge of all those held in the prison, and he was made responsible for all that was done there. 23 The warden paid no attention to anything under Joseph's care, because the Lord was with Joseph and gave him success in whatever he did.
Joseph sat in jail for several years and he probably spent much of that time wondering if he would ever get out. He had started out with such big dreams - was this really the destiny God had for him? To sit in jail?

This is where we get to the good part. What looked like a disaster was actually God positioning Joseph for the really big thing.

Joseph would have never made the proper connections had he not been in that prison cell. (Genesis 40 and 41 will give you all the details.) He went on to become the second in command under Pharaoh, and he saved an entire region from the effects of a huge famine.

Isn't it just like God to do something like this? To arrange things so that, just when you think everything is coming crashing down and it must be the end, it's really the beginning?

These are all of the thoughts that came flashing through my mind yesterday, as I prayed for Mike's company. I had a surge of excitement - what if this fire is God's way of bringing something BIGGER and BETTER?

Is it really crazy of me to be excited that a fire destroyed the building?

I'm thinking it is crazy.

But it's just like God to do something crazy and unexpected.

I don't know what His plan is, or how it will all play out, but I really and truly believe that He has something up his sleeve. No matter what happens, I rest assured that He is faithful and will continue to provide all we need.

I will close here with my favorite Bible verse, found in Isaiah 42:16:
I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.


Alaina said...

Oh my, I'm so sorry to hear about the fire and difficult time for you husband's company. What an excellent reminder of the way God used Joseph's journey and what a great way to pray!

I also wanted to say...I'm glad I'm not the only one whose kid had a noticeable accident in a public place.:)

Baby Tunnel Exodus said...

WELL SAID! I love how God is never late, and that there are no such things as accidents in the Kingdom. I needed your words today; I'm grateful for them.

Don't forget that fire refines. When you put eggs, flour, sugar and cocoa powder in a bowl it's just a mess. It's not until you ADD THE HEAT, that it becomes Cake.

Thank You! Blessings, Whitney

Christine said...

Erin, your words stuck with me today about Joseph as I heard countless people discuss the Vice Presidential debates. I was able to share with several friends this idea of praying the Joseph Anointing over our leaders - local and national. Sometimes it's so hard to know how to pray for politicians! So thank you for sharing. God's timing is never wrong. I'll keep your family's situation in my prayers too.

katemcdonald said...

I am so thrilled that I happened by your blog- what a great post! I too have always loved the story of Joseph because it really does show God works sometimes behind the scenes. I have an aunt whose life has been filled with a lot of hurt..children who were sexually abused by foster children she had taken in, churches that treated her unfairly, many backfired attempts to love the unlovable, grandchildren who died in the womb...and yet, sometimes I see in her life, glimpses of Glory I have never seen anywhere else...