Genesis 43, 44, 45
Focus Verse: And now do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life. – Genesis 45:5
Joseph had already forgiven his brothers. Now, he wanted them to forgive themselves. He recognized that the evil they had done to him was nothing to be angry about now because God had taken that evil and allowed good to come out of it. Joseph didn’t say that his brothers sold him into Egypt. Instead, he said it was God who sent him into Egypt. If Joseph had not been the prime minister of Egypt during the seven years of famine, the nation of Egypt would have perished, surrounding countries and people groups would have perished, Joseph and his family would have been wiped out by hunger, and God’s promise to Abraham would never have come to fruition. Joseph’s brothers (limited by what they saw in the present) may have meant their actions for evil, but God (who sees and knows the future) meant it for good.
Your failures and the failures of others are not powerful enough to thwart God’s faithfulness in your life.
Do not be distressed with yourself because you made a mistake. Do not be angry with others because they mistreated you and the rest of your life appears to be screwed up because of that. Instead, forgive yourself. And forgive others. God has already forgiven you.
Do not think that others have sold you into trouble. Think instead that God has sent you into trouble in order to prepare you for greater things. For every trial, hardship, and affliction that you go through, God’s plans for you remain the same. He has plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. For every pit that you find yourself in, know that God has a palace ahead.
Your present mess is preparing you for a future miracle. Today’s trouble precedes tomorrow’s blessing.