Genesis 9:22-24 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without. 23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father’s nakedness.24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.
How you choose to respond to a problem in your environment could alter the trajectory of your success as well as that of all future generations. In Genesis 9:22-24, there was a problem: Noah got drunk and unknowingly stripped himself naked. This was an ungodly behavior by someone who was previously referred to as righteous in his generation. Ham, who was his youngest son, decided to respond to the situation in two ways. He dishonored his father by looking at his nakedness and went and talked about the problem to his brothers rather than doing something about it. When Shem and Japhet, the other two brothers, heard what had happened they never gossiped and laughed at the situation, instead they instantly decided to do something about it. They took a garment and walked backwards to go and cover the nakedness of their father. Their response, unlike that of Ham, was to fix the problem, while showing honor to their father despite his misdeed. Because they chose to operate in this way, after Noah came to his senses, he blessed Shem and Japhet and their seed, while Ham and his seed, Canaan, were cursed. What created the difference in the outcomes was how each chose to respond to the problem.
How are you choosing to respond to problems in your world? The scripture teaches us two things about how we should respond to problems around us. The first is that we must always respond with honor; not because someone made a mistake or is in a position that is less than we are in means that we can treat them anyway we choose. Because what Noah did was shameful, Ham may have thought his actions were merited, forgetting that Noah was the authority in his environment, and as such is worthy of honor.
The second way in which we should respond to problems is to offer solutions. Without being prompted Shem and Japhet devised a solution to remedy the situation that had arisen and look what happened, the blessings of Shem came down on Abraham and the Children of Israel and they were given the land of the Canaanites, which was the seed of Ham, as an inheritance. Choose the right response to problems in your world.
Life Application: Choose to respond to problems in your world by showing honor and offering solutions to the problem that you see rather than just talking about the problem.
Prayer: Lord, help me to choose the right response at all times to the difficulties in my environment. May I always choose to operate with integrity and honor those around me who should be honored. In Jesus’ name, amen.