23rd day of Lent
And as soon as she saw that he had left his garment in her hand and had fled out of the house, she called to the men of her household and said to them, “See, he has brought among us a Hebrew to laugh at us. He came in to me to lie with me, and I cried out with a loud voice.”
Brian Banks was a promising young football player when he attended high school in Long Beach, Calif. One day, he was one of the most sought-after linebackers in the country and had agreed to play for USC. The next day, he was fighting for his freedom after he was accused of assaulting and raping a classmate named Wanetta Gibson.
Wanetta said that Brian had dragged her into a school stairwell at their school, and there had raped her. In spite of constant changes in Wanetta’s story, prosecutors threatened to take Brian to trial. If convicted, he faced 41 years in prison. Afraid of the consequences, Brian took a plea deal that cut his sentence to five years, and also placed him in California’s sex offender registry.
There’s only one problem – none of what Wanetta alleged ever happened. Years later, she admitted to Brian that the story was fabricated, and his sentence was eventually overturned. The truth did set him free from the allegations. He also got a chance to try out for an NFL team and he often speaks to groups about his experiences.
That’s not too different from what happened to Joseph. Young Joseph was already a slave, having been sold into that sad state by his brothers. But because of his intelligence and eye for excellence, he had quickly elevated into a position of honor in his master’s house. But he was also handsome and had caught the eye of his master’s less-than-honorable wife. And because Joseph did have morals and ethics, he refused her advances.
And because she was a spiteful, less-than-honorable woman, she made sure he paid for his refusal. Overnight, Joseph went from slave to inmate.
Just because you do the right thing, that doesn’t mean that other people won’t try and undermine you. Dishonest people will do dishonest things, and their actions may hurt you. But ultimately, you must remember that God is supreme and will uphold you if you’re in the right. Stay the course, keep the faith and remember that God is on your side.
Today, pray that the Lord will protect you from plans and schemes of less-than-honorable people. And if you are undermined by others, pray that He will ultimately reveal their wickedness and restore you and your good name.
Reflection copyright © 2017 Doug DeBolt.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.