After a week of illness and a snow day Friday, I’m finding the minute-by-minute routine this morning extra-difficult.

Still a little weak and definitely sleepy, I’m fumbling through the motions to get ready for a day of school.

This morning as I was reading about Joseph’s journey from being the favorite son of Jacob to being thrown in a cistern by his brothers and evenutally sold into slavery, I felt a little guilty for thinking I had it rough today. As I continued reading the saga of Joseph’s life, I noticed something special about his character. Scriptures didn’t seem to include any type of lamenting from this man. There’s no dark prison anguish or questioning God with words like, “Why me??”

Joseph appears to take the next thing that comes along in his journey and do what he has to do.

He works hard for Potipher.

He resists Potipher’s wife.

He interprets dreams while in prison.

Yes, Joseph, a one-time dreamer himself, spends a lot of time helping others figure out their dreams along the way. As he lets go of his own needs and focuses on others, God seems to slowly pull him up and out of the darkness surrounding him.

I love that Joseph eventually names one of his sons, “Ephraim,” which he says means, “God has made me fruitful in this land of my grief.”

Not once do I read words expressing Joseph’s grief following the loss of his father’s daily presence in his life or the sadness of being betrayed by his very own brothers in the desert. However, this name choice for his son seems to show that even though Jacob was doing “the next thing” all along the way, he was still grieving.

Today, I am inspired by Joseph to be a “next thing” kind-of person.

Yes, I’m sleepy.

Yes, I’m still a little queasy.

Yes, it’s raining and my blanket calls my name.

But, for today, I am called to teach, to do the next thing in life.

And I am trusting that God will make me fruitful as I lean on Him for strength.

Trust Him today with your pain, your confusion, your fatigue, your loneliness, your fear, your questions, your doubts, your grief………….

Do the next thing.

You will find God to be faithful.

Scripture promises ys that those who “sow in tears will reap songs of joy.”

Be faithful today with your tears.

God is with you.

He will make you fruitful.

Thank you, Father, for stories like the one of Joseph.

Thank you for showing up this morning in something as simple as the naming of his son….


“God has made me fruitful in the land of my grief.”

Help me do the next thing just like Joseph.

In Your Son’s Name,