Bible Society of South Africa
Xanthe Hancox

Fruit of the Spirit – Day 10

Serving from the top

Bible text(s)

53The seven years of plenty that the land of Egypt had enjoyed came to an end, 54and the seven years of famine began, just as Joseph had said. There was famine in every other country, but there was food throughout Egypt. 55When the Egyptians began to be hungry, they cried out to the king for food. So he ordered them to go to Joseph and do what he told them.

Genesis 41:53-55GNBOpen in Bible reader

We end our study of servanthood with a look at Joseph. Joseph was clearly a charismatic man with a bold personality; you might even say he was the kind of person born to lead. He did not always display the exemplary leadership qualities he did when he was Pharaoh’s second-in-command. When we first meet him, he is 17 years old and antagonising his brothers with stories of how, one day, he is going to rule over them all. Joseph does not show any tact, he is insensitive to his brothers’ reactions and it almost gets him killed (Genesis 37).

Joseph’s career took him from a menial slave to the highest-ranking official in the country. As he matured, Joseph learned to develop the traits he inherently possessed in a way that helped him to help others. In every situation, he found the opportunity to be a servant leader. When Pharaoh appointed him as his grand vizier in charge of the whole land of Egypt, including the country’s food supply, he could have done what so many charismatic leaders do and abused his power for personal gain. However, Joseph remained a faithful steward throughout, using his power to both save the Egyptian people and bring unity to his own family.

Servanthood comes in all shapes and sizes. You might be more like Ruth, quietly practical, getting on with the job, or more like Joseph, a charismatic natural leader. Whatever your personality, whatever your gifts and talents, you are perfectly equipped to serve God exactly as you are today.

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