READ: Genesis 44 – 45
BACKGROUND: If you have an opportunity, read these two chapters aloud with every bit of imagination and expression you can! Stories don’t get any better than this one: betrayal, blame, guilt, remorse, deceit, denial, desperation, secrets, espionage, ransom, power, wealth, agony, heartbreak….! So powerful, even Hollywood’s movie moguls, though they’ve tried, fail in their attempts to capture the intense passion of these chapters on film. Give it a try – let God’s word come alive and live these two chapters as though you are there!
THINK:There’s an old familiar saying that goes like this: Your sins will find you out! I can only imagine that after 20 years, this band of brothers were pretty certain their secret was safe. Jacob would never suspect the truth – that they’d sold Joseph – and after all, their shared guilt ensured their silence. No one would ever know….and for twenty years these brothers lived the lie – lived in shame, hiding the truth. But the family is starving and Egyptian grain is the only option. Back in Egypt, “baby” brother in tow, things take a turn for the worse. In Joseph’s “déjà vu” scheme, the brothers are told Benjamin will be taken into slavery. This time, however, Judah doesn’t stand by helplessly. He demands to be Benjamin’s substitute: “I cannot go back to my father if the boy is not with me! Don’t let me see the misery that would come upon my father!” No, not again! He’d returned without a little brother twenty years ago; he’d seen his father worn weary with unending grief – and he wouldn’t let it happen again! God is in the business of character transformation. He won’t let our past mistakes define us!
And in what is one of the most climactic moments in scripture, Joseph gets the big brother he’s longed for! The brother who would rather sacrifice himself, than lose Benjamin or hurt his father! Joseph speaks the secret that has been kept silent all these years: “You sold me into slavery!” Only Joseph isn’t accusing! He isn’t condemning! Instead he is explaining, redeeming, forgiving: “What you meant for evil, God meant for good! He sent me here to save your lives! He is Sovereign! So, it wasn’t you but God!”
Wow…..now that’s what I call a happy ending to a great story! But what about us? What about the times we end up regretting our past, living in denial, or just being in a job, or a school, or a season in life that is really tough? The good news is that when we are committed to Jesus Christ; when we repent and turn to walk with him, he will most certainly turn our circumstances to good! Never give up – even when the days seem long! You are undoubtedly in a place where God will use you! You can be absolutely certain this is true!
Pray this incredible promise of scripture today: Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him and have been called according to his purpose!”