"So Potiphar gave Joseph complete administrative responsibility over everything he owned. With Joseph there, he didn't worry about a thing...
Joseph was a very handsome and well-built young man, and Potiphar's wife soon began to look at him lustfully.
'Come and sleep with me,' she demanded. But Joseph refused.
'Look,' he told her, 'my master trusts me with everything in his entire household. No one here has more authority than I do. He has held back nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How could I do such a wicked thing? It would be a great sin against God?'"
Genesis 39:6-9 NLT
One of the few words the Lord has been repeatedly teaching me about over the past several months is integrity. The Bible talks a lot about integrity directly, throughout the Psalms and Proverbs, but here, God gives us a picture of it.
If anyone had a reason to go "rogue", it was Joseph. Here he was, maliciously sold into slavery by his brothers, taken away to a country not his own. Instead, Joseph chooses to work in excellence. Honoring God, despite his cruddy circumstances.
The Bible tells us that God blessed him because of this, and "he succeeded in everything he did".
Potipher notices this, and grants him even more power:
"...he soon made Joseph his personal attendant. He put him in charge of his entire household and everything he owned."
As a slave, this is an unusual scenario. Put in charge of everything? Potipher's trust in Joseph was obviously great... because of his integrity.
Recently as I was looking into this subject of integrity, I looked up the definition:
1. adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.
2. the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished:
3. a sound, unimpaired, or perfect condition:
My eyes honed in on 2: "the state of being whole".
Immediately, God showed me a picture of a beautiful quilt, but this quilt had small holes in it, throughout. Holes so big that you could stick a finger through. What a shame.
He then spoke to me about my own life and asked, "Is your life whole or full of holes?"
Meaning, is my life sound (free from defect)?
Is it the same behind-the-scenes as it is in public?
Am I the same person with my friends as I am with those I lead?
...Or do I have holes?
Behaviors permissable with some but not others.
Words I've spoken about others that I wouldn't want them to hear.
Attitudes in my heart that lead to less-than-best work.
Joseph was whole.
Even when continually flattered and tempted by Potiphar's wife, he stood his ground. He said, "No one here has more authority than I do. He has held back nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How could I do such a wicked thing? It would be a great sin against God?" (verse 9).
Joseph remembered that God it was God who had given him the authority he had.
He remembered Potiphar trusted him.
He remembered it wasn't just his reputation was at stake, but God's too.
Now, things didn't go perfectly for Joseph, despite his integrity, and they won't all of the time for us either- but that's not up to us. But our integrity is.
The bottom line is: God honors integrity.
Ultimately Joseph's integrity withstood the test of time, despite the lies that were told about him, and he was promoted-- even in prison.
What about me...
How would my life stand up under criticism?
Would my actions speak for themselves?
Do I do what I say I'm going to do... with excellence?
Does my life honor God across the board?
I hope so.
More and more my desire is to be a woman of integrity, my life as whole as Joseph's. A life that honors God in every area- not just out in the open, but behind-the-scenes.
"How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your Word." Psalm 119:9
...and the only way to live according to His Word is to be in His Word and know His Word.
Dwelling in Him,
A little about me...
Hi, I'm Katie!
Wife to Craig, mom of three, author, writer, Jesus-follower, Bible teacher, and coffee enthusiast.
Follow me as I follow Christ and share my heart throughout the journey.
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