Hidden Blessings - Part 2

Pastor Dan Deardoff

My sister has a plaque in her kitchen which shows a mother hen surrounded by about a dozen little chicks. This hen looks slightly worn out by her offspring, who are all cheeping up at her, demanding her attention. The caption says, “Lord, help me endure my blessings.” My sister was blessed with seven children, two of them twins, so I’m sure there were days when her children were young that she felt like that overworked mother hen. At the same time, she considered them a blessing and her attitude was always the same as Psalm 127:3, “Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from Him.” 

According to James 1:17a, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights.” All blessings are from God, because Satan has no gifts to give, only lies and curses. The problem is, some blessings are harder to recognize than others. For instance, how would you feel if you were sold into slavery by your own brothers, who lied to your father and told him you were dead? How would you feel if you were further lied about and ended up in prison, charged with sexual harassment, when you were in reality respectful of another man’s wife? If you were Joseph, whose story is told in Genesis chapters 37-50, I’m sure you wouldn’t see any of that as a blessing at first. 

But after God used an amazing turn of events to make Joseph second in command in Egypt, Joseph helped save the same brothers who sold him into slavery from starving to death during a seven-year long famine. Reflecting back on his life, Joseph was able to forgive them and say later in Genesis 50:20, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good.” In other words, Joseph was able in faith to see the whole ordeal as a hidden blessing, an example of how “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose,” (Romans 8:28).

The Bible is full of stories like Joseph’s, stories of hidden blessings. Paul and Silas were once wrongfully imprisoned in the city of Philippi, and they saw it as an opportunity to evangelize everyone in jail. They were singing hymns at midnight when God sent an earthquake, and when no prisoners escaped, Paul was able to baptize the entire household of the amazed jailer. King David spent years on the run, first from King Saul who wanted to kill him, and then from a son who tried to overthrow him. Where was the hidden blessing in that? God used it to have David write Psalms that expressed deep faith in God in times of trial, Psalms that still inspire people to greater faith and hope. 

What hidden blessing has Jesus placed in your life? Did a hard childhood teach you compassion, so you care more for abused children? Did you have a miscarriage, so you learned how to comfort others who go through the same thing? It isn’t always easy to see hidden blessings. It takes the God given gift of faith, tempered by time and wisdom learned from the Bible. It says in Ephesians 3:20 that God is “able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.” That includes filling our lives with hidden blessings!



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