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Keep Calm and Carry On

Now I might be showing my age if I reflection on the idea of the Carry On movies, that were more than a little risqué, very British in their humour, and really not at all politically correct in today’s world. The other image that comes to me with this title is the numerous gifs (pictures and flyers that deliver a message) that use the words “Keep calm and....” Again from a British background.

We’ve moved on some distance in our story for this week. We’re in the 39th chapter of Genesis, and the story of Joseph. Abram has changed his name to Abraham, has two sons, one is Isaac who continues the story of the Jewish people and the other is Ishmael who continues the story of the Muslim people. From Isaac comes Jacob and Esau. Jacob is renamed Israel and Joseph is but one of Jacob’s twelve sons.

It is through Joseph that the Israelite people come to Egypt and remain there throughout the famine and eventually become slaves. But, that’s not where we are at this week.

Apart from a brief mention to establish the family line at the end of chapter 35, we don’t hear much of Joseph until Genesis 37. So, we’ve got a full 2 chapters of the Joseph story to gloss over before we get to our reading.

Basically, Joseph is one of two sons born to Jacob’s favourite wife Rachel and as such holds a special place in Jacob’s heart. His is the 2nd youngest of the 12 and his big brothers do not appreciate this special place Jacob has for Joseph. Joseph has some dreams that interpret out to mean that he will hold power and position over his older brothers, which as you can imagine goes down like a lead balloon!

One day the brothers get so angry with him they sell him to some traders who in turn sell him to a nobleman in Egypt. Joseph works hard for this nobleman and gains extra responsibilities and authority amongst the household slaves.

This nobleman’s wife likes the look of Joseph and decides to seduce him. Joseph wants nothing of that and so the nobleman’s wife charges him with rape. With the charge comes time in goal and the beginning of Joseph’s relationship with the Pharaoh, but that story is not this week.

How do you feel when things are not going right or as you would want them to? Do you keep calm, trust in God and carry on or do you get side tracked by the uncertainty? From this point in Joseph’s story things change and they are big changes leading to even bigger changes for the people of God. God again covenants with God’s people and the ‘rainbow’ of commitment continues.

Jay Robinson

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