by Stephen Whitney

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Troubled Family (1 of 13)
Series: Integrity of Joseph
Stephen Whitney
Genesis 37:1-11

James Dobson in his book Love Must Be Tough wrote: ''Family instability affects everyone - especially the children. The most vulnerable victims of family instability are the children who are too young to understand what has happened to their parents.

That tragic impact on the next generation was graphically illustrated to me in a recent conversation with a sixth-grade teacher in an upper middle-class California city. She was shocked to see the results of a creative writing task assigned to her students. They were asked to complete the sentence that began with the words 'I wish.'

The teacher expected the boys and girls to express wishes for bicycles, dogs, television sets and trips to Hawaii. Instead, twenty of the thirty children made reference in their responses to their own
disintegrating families. A few of their sentences were as follows:

- ''I wish my parents wouldn't fight.''
- ''I wish my father would come back.''
- ''I wish my mother didn't have a boyfriend.''
- ''I wish I could get straight A's so my father would love me.''
- ''I wish I had one mom and one dad so the kids wouldn't make fun of me. I have three moms
and three dads and they botch up my life.''

God designed the family to be one father and one mother who lovingly raise their children to honor and worship God.


Jacob had four wives, but his favorite was Rachel. He had ten sons by his other three wives, while Rachel did not have one child. When he was 91 years old Rachel had a son who he named Joseph
which means ''Yahweh has added.'' He recognized that God had blessed him with another son who was 30 years younger than his oldest brother Reubin.

Chuck Swindoll - ''When Joseph was born, Jacob got a new lease on life. We often witness that today when men in their forties or older become fathers. When that happens, older fathers seem to gain a new incentive to rearran ...

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