Is there a 'solution' to life?

Posts tagged ‘mistakes’

Attempted Sex, and other attention grabbing titles (that have nearly no relation to the content) – Genesis 39


I’ve had a really interesting week since my last blog, the most surprising thing that happened is that I’m actually blogging 7 days after my last post.

Included in this weeks happenings are University hand ins, Challenging church sermons, new followers on twitter and that other thing that slips my mind. Just like revision is slipping off the top of my to-do list while I blog, not a surprise I’m blogging again then.

Although saying it all like that makes my week sound boring and uninteresting. I’ve actually had some interesting things to think about: 1. The role of authority in the Church, 2.  Idealism and Realism and balancing them both, 3. The increased responsibility of leadership.

recaps on my thoughts 1. Having a strong authority in the church is important, especially in a secular society in which the church often comes under fire for it’s stance on controversial issues. If the church isn’t entirely focused on God’s authority then it’s reputation falls apart. If there isn’t an strong leadership in the church,  helping it to stay true to the Bible, and the mission God has for it, then we’ll tear ourselves apart, stuck on the little issues, and not focused on the big ones.

A realistic view of the world is quite really important, if we don’t look at what is  actually going on, then we’ll end up hurt and disappointed. The main focus of my thoughts on this matter was Christians – We aim to be perfect and Christlike. Which is exactly right – we need to AIM there, although we also have to accept we are doomed to fail, and be realistic. We can’t do it. Even when God helps us to be better, we still aren’t perfect.

Don’t lose heart though, cause God still uses us even though we’re screw ups.

Then the thoughts on responsibility in leadership – well that’s what I want to talk about next week, so come back and read them then.

This week though, is all about our man Joe, and his new job.

This is what we’re working from

http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis+39&version=NIV

 

So Joe is now a slave, he’s doing well in his new role, his boss promotes him, again and again until Joe is the big boss, the only guy who Joseph takes orders from his owner Potiphar, and Potiphar’s wife. Pretty sweet.

Then the wife looks at Joe, a “well-built and handsome” young man, and she thinks “I want a slice.” Since she is Joe’s owner, she says “Have sex with me” and then Joe says “No.”

She asks him again, and again he tells her “no” every single time. Like a good boy! Joe’s hitting the big leagues and he doesn’t want to mess things up.  Potiphar’s wife is not satisfied (punintented) and she wants revenge – hell hath no furry like a woman scorned. So one day when she’s in the house alone, she asks him, and he says no. Raging she grabs hold of his cloak and rips it off him, but he escapes her. She then tells her husband that Joe tried to rape her. Joe, goes to prison, lucky to be alive.

And God’s looking out for Joe, and he ends up the boss again – I mean come on, you can’t keep the Lord’s men down.

That’s really encouraging for me in a lot of ways –

Joe starts out as a flawed character, very flawed in fact. He is attention seeking, self obsessed, doesn’t think about other people’s feelings. The guy gets beaten down, his brothers sell him as a slave, He works hard, get back on top, and then this woman slanders him, and he’s sent to prison. Even in prison though, he’s working hard, showing signs of a greater calling. Even when he’s at the lowest ladder, he works is way up to the top rung of it.

The other encouraging thing is Joe’s new view on morality, he now clearly sees right and wrong, and steers clear of the wrong.

As somebody who has a messed up past in terms of doing wrong things, I’m right up there. I have hurt people, hurt myself and hurt God – I’ve done thing I’m not proud of, that I’m ashamed of. I’ve lied my arse off, I’ve cheated in relationships, I’ve cheated in tests. I’ve manipulated, irritated and frustrated people for my own amusement.

I’ve been a massive douche for a long time of my life, cold calculating and self interested.

Joseph changes. He becomes a new man, he has something to be proud of, everything he does is going right, when people slap him down he bounces right back up!

I wanna be like Joseph, I want to be productive, useful and able to effect changes that help people. I’ve read how Joseph changed, and if he did it, then I know I can do it, with God’s help all things are possible.

Now, this is where my opening paragraphs tie in. I’m looking at this realistically. There is no insta-cure for being a douche. There isn’t a “I’m going to be perfectly nice guy” pill I can pop and feel good about where I’m headed.

There is some hard work a head (starting with the revision I’m putting off). Working with God, my church and in my relationships, with other people I can make progress.

I can know I am not doomed to repeat my failures forever. I’ll get better.

I’ll find new failings in my life, and then God willing, I’ll knock those sons-of-lady-dogs right of the park.

We can all change, get better and make progress in our life –

Titus 2:11-12

New International Version (NIV)

“11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,”

Learning to live a self-controlled upright and godly life in this present age isn’t going to be easy, but at least the method isn’t a mystery.

Thanks for reading.

 

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Genesis 38. Sex, prostitutes and failed relationships.


So, blogging has become and infrequent occurrence. I get really good idea’s while I’m sitting in church listening to a sermon, or having a really good conversation. However, when I arrive home, and turn on my laptop, I’ve finished thinking about the topic, and the will to write on it has gone. Rather frustrating really.

Life is all good at the moment, university is going smoothly, I have a lot of work, yet it’s not overwhelming. I recently got engaged, and life with Eilidh, my fiancée is pretty good. We spend a lot of time together, and it’s wonderful. Life goes on, in a wonderful meandering fashion, and I enjoy it.

Yet my blog calls! It’s still sitting in my favourites bar, yet has slipped out of my top 8 most visited pages. So, a re-haul is in order! Either of my blog, or my habits. I feel that it’s the habits that need to change, since my blog still needs to be finished, I have Genesis to finish regardless of any of my other idea’s I want to post about.

So, Genesis.

Genesis 38 infact, now Genesis 38 is an interesting chapter, which focuses around sex and prostitutes. Who ever said the Bible isn’t interesting?

http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis+38&version=NIV

My brief paraphrase is below.

It follows on from just after Joseph was sold into slavery, the brothers are continuing their lives without him. We focus on Judah, who has moved out, got married and had a son called Er, and a few more besides him. Many years must have passed, because his son Er, is now of marrying age (IE in his teens).

Er gets married to a woman called Tamar. However, we’re told Er was evil, and he dies (put to death by the Lord). Tamar wasn’t preggers though, and custom dictated that she must have a child to carry on her husbands name. So, her brother in law, Onan (Judah’s second son) is told he has to knock her up.

Awkward(more…)

Satisfaction – having my head screwed on right!


So this week I was on a Scripture Union camp, I’ve mentioned them a fair few times on here. This camp was pretty new for me, I’ve never done such a large camp before! 110 campers, and a team of 55, makes a lot of people living in a relatively small space.

As always in an SU camp we follow a fairly standard plan, breakfast, a time for games together, to be loud and shoutey and excitable as a whole camp, and then smaller activities ranging from football to raftbuilding, archery and high ropes courses (This year including “nail bar”) and crafts and more and more! Then lunch and more activities, then some free time, in which campers can chat, play team games, or pool and table tennis, go for walks have some alone time, what ever they want – within reason. Then dinner and then an evening activity which is generally all together, hunt the leader/catch the leader, giant cludo, a ceilidh/foam party (which was so amazing), which is either before or after a teaching session, this year we had group time (in our smaller groups), watched a video  as well as having amazing worship all together in our large group of ~160.

But for those of you who where at camp with me, it might well all be a blur of good times, food, banter and learning. While in the morning team meeting (Which took place before breakfast 😦 ) we worked the beatitudes.

I’m not here to talk about the beatitudes though, that’s for another time. I’m here because of something the team leader reiterated to us a few times over the week. That we shouldn’t go away from camp and be sad, but we should leave happy, and full of joy, knowing that God’s work has been done this week.

It’s quite a challenge to me, and I’m sure to a large portion of the team as well as the campers! (more…)