The 3rd Essential: “Overcome”
The story of Joseph in Genesis 37-50 is one of the great stories of all time … because Joseph was one of the greatest, most faith-filled men who ever lived. His life illustrates 5 important observations that I have made about life & success:
1. We will not always be liked, understood, appreciated, or valued in life.
2. We stand a good chance of being hurt or taken advantage of by others at one time or another.
3. Even if others don’t’ hurt us, we can hurt ourselves.
4. Sometimes we get an opportunity to get even.
5. If we want to find true success in life, we must learn to overcome things.
Observation #5 is true, but not easy to put into practice. Let me offer 4 things that can help us be overcomers:
1. We must believe that no matter what has happened to us in our lives, God can use it for our good if we will respond correctly. (Romans 8:28)
2. We must try to resolve the things that we can. That may mean going and asking someone for forgiveness. It may mean bringing up an issue or incident that caused problems. But it may mean we have to accept that things happened, can’t be change, but we are going to move forward.
3. We may need to seek God’s healing for our hearts & minds.
4. We need to be willing to let God use the things of our past to help others. See 2 Corinthians 1:3-4.
Conclusion? Some people let the past define who they are (i.e. they accept that they will always be known as the person who did _____). Other let the past confine them (they keep repeating the failures & sins of the past. The goal is to let the past refine us / shape & sharpen us for serving others.