Wednesday, February 01, 2012

The Bible in a Year: Week 4

Sorry I'm a little late on this one! (What else is new though)

Joseph's Coat by Diego Velazquez

So last week I probably talked at least a bit about Joseph, and how amazing his grace toward his brothers was, but today I'd really like to talk about that a little more. I think there's two things that stood out exceptionally for me about that: The first, is the way he responded to his brothers when they came to visit him; the second is how God was at work through it all.

We first really meet Joseph in kind of lousy circumstances- his brothers hate him, he has a vision of them bowing down to him, and he gets a really nice coat and they trash it and sell him into slavery. He gets carted off to Egypt and has more cool dreams, this time the Pharaoh gets involved, and there's so much potential for terrible things to happen. Instead, he spends a bit of time in jail then becomes incredibly valuable in Pharaoh's eyes and gains his favor. God takes Joseph from this awful situation and moulds it into something brilliant, but it gets better. When all of Egypt is thrown into famine and drought, Joseph is able to store up a ton of extra supplies that last for the seven years until that gets sorted out, and his brothers come by to ask for his help. He weeps at the sight of them and is so filled with emotion when they bring his brother Benjamin with them, and he utters some words to them that are just so insightful and actually really important for us to remember in our everyday lives. When he tells them he's their abandoned brother, they freak out and are worried he's going to enact some kind of terrible revenge on them, but instead, he basically tells them, "Look around bro- God took that crappy situation and turned it into something totally amazing! I'm here with Pharaoh, blessing you guys, and we're reunited, and all this because you tried to screw me over! I don't hate you guys for that- I now know that God was at work through this from the very beginning!"

Not only did Joseph show his brothers grace, but he also acknowledged that God was doing cool things in him the whole time! And He was providing so much for Joseph and his brothers and the Egyptians by being faithful even through the famine. This was a very helpful reminder for me over the weekend. I was worried about my financial situation (debt, debt, debt!) and was starting to lose faith in God's ability to provide for me- then someone blessed me ridiculously with a big cheque to pay off school and driving lessons! God is good :)

So let's raise a glass to Joseph- a good reminder to us that we should keep short accounts, trust in God's provision and give Him glory where glory is due!

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