2.5" x 3.5" Acrylic & Watercolor Painting ~ POTiPHAR
Both Sides of the Story - Phil Collins
As I was thinking about some art cards I painted … representing a very different time and place (Potiphar’s Royal Household in ancient Egypt) -- I was hit by a brick in the side of the head in the form of this song.
Joseph is my Biblical hero for lack of a better way to put it… they don’t come any more loaded with integrity or purity on a human level than him in my recollection.
Joe was a favorite son with big dreams. His Dad gave him a nifty colorful robe which made his brothers jealous…plus, he simply annoyed his brothers.
He was a dreamer…
I mean a REAL dreamer.
He dreamt that his brothers would one day bow down to him. What we know now that they didn’t know then in full, was that the God of the Universe had a big plan and all these things were part of it. It has even reached down through all this time to make my life what it is.
The brothers decided to do away with little Joe. They tossed him in a pit and tore his colorful robe and splattered it with animal blood, explaining to their devastated father that Joe was killed by wild beasts. That was their side of the story. They actually spared Joe’s life and sold him to some travelers. Joe ended up in Egypt where he, as a young kid who just lost everything, had to learn a new language and new culture and make a new life.
2.5" x 3.5" Acrylic & Watercolor Painting ~ POTiPHAR'S WIFE
Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. Potiphar, an Egyptian who was one of Pharaoh's officials, the captain of the guard, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him there.
The LORD was with Joseph and he prospered, and he lived in the house of his Egyptian master. When his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD gave him success in everything he did, Joseph found favor in his eyes and became his attendant. Potiphar put him in charge of his household, and he entrusted to his care everything he owned. From the time he put him in charge of his household and of all that he owned, the LORD blessed the household of the Egyptian because of Joseph. The blessing of the LORD was on everything Potiphar had, both in the house and in the field. So he left in Joseph's care everything he had; with Joseph in charge, he did not concern himself with anything except the food he ate. Now Joseph was well-built and handsome, and after a while his master's wife took notice of Joseph and said, "Come to bed with me!"
JOSEPH’S SIDE OF THE STORY
But he refused. "With me in charge," he told her, "my master does not concern himself with anything in the house; everything he owns he has entrusted to my care. No one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?" And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her. One day he went into the house to attend to his duties, and none of the household servants was inside. She caught him by his cloak and said, "Come to bed with me!" But he left his cloak in her hand and ran out of the house.
2.5" x 3.5" Acrylic & Watercolor Painting ~ JOSEPH iN Egypt
MRS. POTIPHAR’S SIDE OF THE STORY
When she saw that he had left his cloak in her hand and had run out of the house, she called her household servants. "Look," she said to them, "this Hebrew has been brought to us to make sport of us! He came in here to sleep with me, but I screamed. When he heard me scream for help, he left his cloak beside me and ran out of the house."
She kept his cloak beside her until his master came home. Then she told him this story: "That Hebrew slave you brought us came to me to make sport of me. But as soon as I screamed for help, he left his cloak beside me and ran out of the house."
When his master heard the story his wife told him, saying, "This is how your slave treated me," he burned with anger. Joseph's master took him and put him in prison, the place where the king's prisoners were confined.
JOSEPH’S SIDE OF THE STORY
But while Joseph was there in the prison, the LORD was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden. So the warden put Joseph in charge of all those held in the prison, and he was made responsible for all that was done there. The warden paid no attention to anything under Joseph's care, because the LORD was with Joseph and gave him success in whatever he did.
WAIT! It just keeps getting better….
Joe’s brothers back home were starving and set out to seek help from Pharoah’s House. Their brother Joe now held the power to save them. They didn’t recognize him…
The story continues with amazing details and twists and turns! I wish there was an epic movie - and Charleton Heston could be Joseph. It’s big… it’s a BIG story. God's side of the story always is!
A must read:
Genesis 40-47: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis%2040-47;&version=31;
When I am tempted to feel sorry for myself because I have been misrepresented or even lied about, I think of how Joe handled it. When I see people who have the truth and the lie set before them and they still choose the lie, I think of how Joe handled it. When I see people walk among the darkness because it is easier than coming fully into the light, I think of how Joe handled it.
Joseph’s brothers did bow down to him … and he had compassion on them. That is amazing.
He was hated. He was sold. He was abused. He was lied about. He was falsely accused. He was neglected.
Through it all he held his faith and was blessed…and it blessed those around him.
We see the amazing blessing and events unfolding as we look back on his life, but he didn’t know any of that was coming … he walked one step at a time just like you and I do.
Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. We live by faith, not by sight. We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it.
~II Corinthians 5: 1-9
Studying Joseph’s life and the generations that followed takes us full circle into the greatest story of redemption the world has ever known ... All the way to me... And to you if you also know the Son of God.
The only side of any story that counts is HIS side of the story.
Joy in the journey,
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