Yet the chief cupbearer did not remember Joseph, but forgot him. Genesis 40:23
In Genesis 40, the story of Joseph’s imprisonment unfolds with his encounter with the Pharaoh’s chief wine steward and chief baker, also in custody. They trusted Joseph, a man of God, with their dreams, which he was able to interpret because “interpretations belong to God” (v. 8). He asked the cupbearer to remember him to Pharaoh as a kindness for the favorable interpretation. But, as our opening verse says, the cupbearer forgot him. With that, Joseph was once again in transition. He had already overcome several challenges: mocked and thrown into a pit by his brothers, taken to a strange land against his will, falsely accused, snatched away from his good job, and thrown into prison.
How do we find meaning and keep the faith while in transition? I don’t know, but Joseph and I are not alone in trying to figure out how to live faithfully while in transition.
I answered a call last night from one of my young friends, a brave twenty-three-year-old who only a month ago had embarked on an exciting job with a well-known cruise line. She had been fired. Then, added to that, they told her to leave the ship and provided no funds for her to travel home—from Hawaii to Houston.
I was speechless. After a period of unemployment, we had been delighted about her new job. Now, ripped from her good job, she was somewhere out in the Pacific Ocean trying to get home. But, like Paul in 2 Corinthians 4:8-9, she was perplexed, but not in despair. She had faith that God was with her. That gave her hope. But she is once again in transition.
My neighbor, in her mid-fifties, recently resigned from her job. She was a caregiver who had a demanding client. She gave him three weeks’ notice before leaving to give him time to find a replacement, but he told her to get her things and leave immediately. She was shocked and hurt. She had to call friends for help gathering her property (which was quite a bit because she had lived there). So, she is once again in the job market and feeling “persecuted, but not forsaken” (v. 9) because she has faith that sustains her and a supportive daughter who encourages her. She, too, is in transition and trying to understand what to do next at her age.
Then there is me. How do I make meaning of my own life? My recent attempts at employment were, let’s just say, short-term. I would love to fully do what I love and make money while doing it. I want to expand my client list, write another book, and secure speaking engagements. I’m in transition as a woman over fifty-five who feels excited about health and wellness and who feels called to be a holistic wellness advocate for women. How do I continue in my ministry and be the best mother and grandmother possible?
I am in transition and trying not to despair. I value my relationship with The Upper Room: writing this blog and being a workshop leader on the upcoming My Quiet Spaces Retreat at Sea. How can I do more of this ministry?
Like Joseph waiting in prison, my two friends are seeking their next job, and I’m trying to figure out my life. Over the next few posts, I will explore what transitioning looks and feels like for women of different generations–culturally and spiritually. We know that faith matters. Stay with me. Let’s keep going and have a conversation about what works for you, too.
- Anticipating the My Quiet Spaces Retreat-at-Sea cruise–one of the most exciting opportunities I can imagine. It allows me to do what I love.
- Savoring a chocolate gelato while walking in the mall
- My daughter having a job where she can take her daughter to work
- Knowing my daughter feels good about the direction her life is taking
- My two friends not feeling forsaken, but hopeful, while in transition
- Having a friend to help pack as we prepare to move
- Getting a full refund on a mattress topper that I thought they would not take back