Good morning! I hope this day finds you and your family well, and I want you to know that you are in my prayers daily during this difficult time.
I invite you to take a few moments with me to reflect on today’s Upper Room Devotional below — as well as on the theology woven into “It is well with my soul.”
Genesis 39:20-23 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
20 And Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, the place where the king’s prisoners were confined; he remained there in prison. 21 But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love; he gave him favor in the sight of the chief jailer. 22 The chief jailer committed to Joseph’s care all the prisoners who were in the prison, and whatever was done there, he was the one who did it. 23 The chief jailer paid no heed to anything that was in Joseph’s care, because the Lord was with him; and whatever he did, the Lord made it prosper.
Tim’s Devotional Reflection for Today
Genesis 39:21 in today’s reading says that “the Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love.” Steadfast love translates the Hebrew word Chesed. This important word occurs 248 times in the Hebrew Bible. It is a beautiful word used in the Hebrew scriptures to describe kindness or love between people, of the faithfulness and love of people towards God, and especially the love and mercy of God toward humanity. There is generous use of the word in the Psalms where it is traditionally translated “lovingkindness” and refers to the lovingkindness of God.
The presence of God and the lovingkindness of God wasn’t just for Joseph or the Psalmist, but the presence and steadfast love of God is for all people. The affirmation of faith that we most often use in our sanctuary worship services ends with these words that bear repeating over and over—especially in the dark and difficult times of our lives: God is with us. We are not alone. Thanks be to God.
Thank you for sharing this early moment of your day with me, with God, and with the words and music that I hope you will carry with you throughout the coming day and night.
I am so grateful for you, for our church, and for the Love that will see us all through this very difficult time. Please stay safe and well and we’ll be together again in spirit tomorrow morning!
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster