The past number of weeks in my blogs we discussed the sovereignty of God and the question whether He could be trusted when circumstances are difficult. To sum up the message, I would like you to consider reading a portion of the Bible to solidify the concept of a God who has all in control, at all times.
Start in Genesis and read the story of Joseph, my all time favorite Bible character. He was faithful, wise, hard-working and trusted God when most would not. Though being sold into slavery by his brothers, enticed by Potiphar's wife, unjustly thrown into jail, and faced possibly his biggest test...fame and fortune, he honored and believed in God.
Read Genesis 37, and then chapters 39 to 45.
I know when life is in a season of turmoil, reading can be a challenge, so take your time. If you have an iPhone, download the Bible app and listen to the audio version.
The reason I encourage reading these chapters is to clearly see the sovereignty of God in a life from beginning to end.
Through new eyes you will view how God had a good plan, though evil and sin were acted upon. Each sorrow was a strand needed in God's grand tapestry. Joseph had to dream those dreams as a child and share the vision in order to enrage his brothers. Their jealousy and sin caused them to sell Joseph into slavery, so that he would land up in Egypt. Potiphar's wife though devious and unfaithful full of evil intent was a pawn in God's hands. God knew Joseph would not betray his master and would be thrown into prison for his faithfulness, but God needed Joseph there so he could interpret the dreams of the wine bearer and baker. Then the dreams had to be fulfilled and the wine bearer restored to Pharaoh's palace. There, the wine bearer would hear of Pharaoh's troubling dreams and the fact no person could interpret them. At that point the wine bearer would finally remember Joseph's unique ability to interpret dreams. Finally Joseph after years of trial, would be right where God planned all along. Joseph's integrity, ability to rely heavily on God, and his outstanding leadership skills would now be used. Joseph was placed in a role of power second only to Pharaoh himself. He implemented and prepared for the coming famine. When the famine hit the land and His brothers came for food, the very ones that sold him into slavery, what do you think Joseph said to them?
And Joseph said to his brothers, "Please come near to me." So they came near. Then he said: "I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt. But now do not therefore be grieved or angry with yourselves because you sold me here: For God sent me before you to preserve life, for these two years the famine has been in the land, and there are still five years in which there will be neither plowing or harvesting. And God sent me before you to preserve a posterity for you in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you who sent me here, but God: and He has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt." Genesis 45:4-8
Through it all, Joseph remained a forgiving man, he forgave his brothers and saved his family from extinction. Why? BECAUSE JOSEPH UNDERSTOOD THAT GOD WAS IN CONTROL AND HAD A PLAN. He allowed God to utilize both trouble and blessing in his life, and chose faithfulness through it all.
What a comfort...For when life meets trouble (which it will), trouble meets God. A God who is not surprised, not undone, not without a plan for your life.
YOU ARE A SPECIAL DAUGHTER, SON, FRIEND OF GOD, AND HE LOVES YOU AND HAS A PLAN. Please think of this while you listen to an inspiring song by JOSH WILSON called "Carry Me"