When Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt, Jacob said to his sons,
"...go down to that place and buy (grain) for us there, that we may live and not die.”
Now Joseph was governor over the land; and it was he who sold to all the people of the land. And Joseph’s brothers came and bowed down before him with their faces to the earth... So Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him.
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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.
Genesis 45:4-5 (NKJV)
God surely has done an amazing work in Joseph's life.
I wonder how he has kept from complaining all these many years, and yet he forgives his brothers, is kind, generous and wise.
What depth of character to see the greater picture that God has used even their hatred of him... the harm they inflicted to throw him away and not seemingly show concern for his welfare again... only to find that God used him in a great way to save so many from famine.
God surely has shown him great love and favor. God surely must have others in his life to care about him over the years... even in Potiphar's house, even in the prison, even in the palace of Pharaoh.
God must have given Joseph experiences that caused him to think on, and contemplate how he would receive his brothers if, and when, he ever saw them again. For this was not a typical human reaction. This was a deeper, God-given compassion... a forgiveness and generosity of heart that mirrors that of Jesus and the mercy that He showered over us on the Cross.
Oh, that we would trust God for the same when we face difficult people. That we could step away for a time to contemplate how we should love them, how He can love them through us.
Word of God... train me, today...
to be generous, even to those who have hurt me.
to be forgiving, even when others have betrayed me.
to trust God's timing, even for dreams that seem impossible.
And they sat before him, the firstborn according to his birthright and the youngest according to his youth; and the men looked in astonishment at one another. Then he took servings to them from before him, but Benjamin’s serving was five times as much as any of theirs. So they drank and were merry with him.
Look how Joseph served them...
Lord, let me be a servant... even unto these.
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