How to Change Your Future

Posted by Jim Murphy on Wednesday, October 15, 2014 @ 10:03 AM

Family isn’t easy. And sometimes it’s really tempting to give up or check out because you know that in a few short years you’ll be out of the house, on your own, and surrounding yourself with people who don’t embarrass you in public. But what if your exit strategy is flawed? What if just surviving your family now doesn’t solve your problems but just brings them into the future? What if the things you do and say this week will actually matter years down the road and long after you stop having a curfew? Even after leaving his family’s home, Joseph found himself in a number of situations where he had to live with and listen to people who didn’t deserve his respect. In each relationship, as he practiced honoring God by honoring others, Joseph’s attitude toward authority made all the difference for him and eventually for his entire family. Even then, when things looked like they couldn’t get any worse, Joseph did not stop being faithful to God and doing what he knew to be right. He honored those around him and respected authority—even though his circumstances were less than ideal.


TRUTH: Learning to deal with your family is as much about your future as it is about your now.
REALITY: It’s easier to yell back, be rude, and have a bad attitude.


Joseph (Genesis 39:4-22)


  1. Treat People Well - Joseph took ownership. He did what was right, even when others didn’t. And it changed everything. How would you treat your family if your actions were based on honoring God, not based on how your family behaves?
  2. React Kindly - Things aren’t going to go well all the time. But that’s not an excuse to behave any way you want. It’s a chance to react well today, so you can get even better at it in the future. Joseph was masterful in responding well to authority, and it set the stage for him to handle authority well when it was his turn to lead.
  3. Trust God - It may have seemed crazy at the time to believe this, but Joseph was certain that he could trust God and his guidance. He knew that he could trust God no matter what he was going through and that God would guide him through it. And that determined how he reacted to people in charge.

The truth is, God helps you build a better future when you trust him with your now.


Help students understand that the way they treat their families now is creating patterns and habits that will form the foundation for how they treat people in the future.

  1. What are some negative ways you’ve responded to people in charge? (Ex. Eye roll, sarcasm)
  2. What do you think would happen if a) you treated your future college roommate the way you treat your siblings? b) You treated your future boss the way you treat your parents?
  3. If someone else observed your life, how do you think they’d describe the way you treat each member of your family?
  4. What’s one immediate change you need to make in the way you treat your family?

The content of this post is based on curriculum provided by Orange: XP3.

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These posts are from the weekly lessons at Wednesday night FUEL. They are designed to share with you an outline of the content of our discussions, the small group questions, and ideas for conversations at home. Feel free to use these for your own conversations or lessons.

Jim Murphy

Jim Murphy, Associate Pastor, NextGen MinistriesAssociate Pastor NextGen Ministries

218-751-3699 ext 14



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