Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Come close to me.” When they had done so, he said, “I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will be no plowing and reaping. But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance. —Genesis 45:4-7
Twenty-two years previous Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery. Now here they are before him and he is the 2nd in command of all Egypt. It was in his power to carry out revenge. What would you and I have done if we were in his situation? Would we have been bitter and desirous to carry out vengeance on those who caused us so much pain? Might it be our yearning to now make them pay for what they had done to us?
In the passage above Joseph told them “do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you.” He had the bigger picture and this is really something for us to think about. God uses difficult things in our lives to carry out His purposes. Like Joseph, we may be distressed at the time of the actually incident, but with time to reflect we can understand how God works through even the evil that people intend upon us to accomplish His objectives. May we understand this and look at difficult situations differently, knowing God is ultimate Sovereign.
Thank You Father that You tell us “that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Please help me to keep this in focus and faithfully live for You in the authority of Jesus and by the Holy Spirit’s power.