I had a groundbreaking conversation with a close friend a month ago, and he talked about how Joseph, in the final chapters of Genesis was a blessing to nearly every group he ran into. He was a blessing to the slave traders. He was a blessing to Potiphar. He was a blessing to the inmates in his jail. He was a blessing to Pharaoh. He was a blessing to the world—the pagan world—and a blessing to his brothers. God saved 70 people (Jacob’s family) by saving the pagan world (from the famine). It is a mind blowing thing to think about.
One interesting thing to apply to that is our natural desire to be blessed by others. We love to be blessed by others. But, if others are not really like us, we often do not want them to receive the same blessing as us. Joseph, I believe, went through all of those extraordinarily difficult circumstances so that God could show that in saving the 70, he would also save the world. I think the challenge for us is to root out our unwillingness to be a blessing to others—unless we already like and love them—and see that God wants us to live the way Joseph lived his life. Joseph understood that, because you see that in his reply to his brothers that whatever they meant for evil, God meant it for good, and for the saving of many people. It is easy to take the first part of that verse and skim over the second part. God did what he did through Joseph; although Joseph suffered along the way, he was a blessing to all of those people because God had plans for them.
I say that to say that one of the challenges of healthy church community is to see the important role every member, and every family, and every volunteer plays in what God is doing. You are important to the ministry at your local church, and Jesus really wants you to be a part of it. God has given you gifts—and they are not just limited to your talents—others may look up to you; others may listen to you; others may want to hang out with you. I also feed off of the energy of other believers who are excited about Jesus, and want to see what God can do in their lives, and in what we are doing. I even love to hang out with those who can get obnoxious about it. So, I desire to be a blessing to my fellow members at my church, and I hope and pray that you will be encouraged to be a blessing to your church and the ministries you are involved in too. I want to be a discipler in the lives of those God has placed in my path. I want to be a friend and a mentor who they can talk hard things with, who will listen to them, knowing that not all hard questions have an easy answer to dig out.
That is part of what it means to have church community. You want to be blessed; so ask God how you can also bless others.