Who will you be blessing as you depart this life?
Do we think enough about the end that must come? Do we remember that “we brought nothing into this world and it is certain we shall taking nothing out” (1 Timothy 6:7) – “nothing” in the sense of material things. Personally, I believe there is got to be some deep-down joy in going out with a sense of fulfilment if not accomplishment. ‘Accomplishment’ may be the wrong word, since we may accomplish a lot, without fulfilling God’s purpose for our lives. But if we can come to the end, having been God’s instrument of love, joy and peace to others, having communicated God’s righteousness in our situations, that must be fulfilling. I hope that I’ll be ready when my turn comes, and sound enough in heart and mind to find joy in that readiness.
What a profound sense of joy must come to a dying senior who has lived through changing scenes, yet has known prosperity, and who approaches the end with both a sense of fulfilment and a guarantee of blessing for the future generation (s)!
Here is Israel (Jacob) reunited with his long-lost son Joseph, his favourite whom he had gifted with a special coat. He had lived through losing this special son and coming to understand that Joseph’s dreams of greatness were all part of God’s plan. He had the opportunity to meet and now to bless Joseph’s sons. They were entitled to their full inheritance as the offspring of Rachel.
But it is Ephraim, the younger, who gets the blessing that, according to tradition, was bestowed on the firstborn. Joseph could not see very well and with hands crossed he put his right hand on the one whom Joseph presented to his left. Both boys were blessed, though, to perpetuate the name of their grandfather, and his ancestors – Abraham and Isaac.
Joseph was upset about this “mistake.” For me, all I see is a continuation of the saga. Abraham blessed Isaac and not Ishmael – for that was to God’s plan, we read; and Isaac blessed Jacob and not Esau the elder- for that was to God’s plan, we read. So now Ephraim is blessed, whose name the Northern Kingdom (Israel) would honour.
And with a double blessing Israel blessed Joseph and reminded him that Egypt was not really home. And where is ‘home’ really?
This world is not my home, but just a passing through… (Jim Reeves)