Day 14 of 500. Famine. “Day 14 of 500. Famine. “…the seven years of famine began to come, as Joseph had said. There was famine in all lands, but in all the land of Egypt there was bread.” Genesis 41:54
You may find that life has thrown you down a well and left you for dead, or thrown you in prison under false charges, but remember one day those same people who mistreated you may depend on you and what you can do for them for their very survival. Take your suffering in stride, as James said, “For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.” Endurance is the key to surviving the famines that will come. And not just your survival but those around you, even your enemies. Remember what Proverbs says, “When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.”
The below comes courtesy of our good friend Richard Cook. He sent me this devotional from The Bible League and it was a “good word in due season.”
The Bible League, Living His Word Daily Devotional
But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them. — Genesis 51:19-21 NIV
Joseph had two dreams that revealed what God intended to do with his life (Genesis 37:5-11). Although highly symbolic like most dreams, it was clear that Joseph would one day be, at the very least, the head of his people. God had plans for him to save his family and many others from a famine, but he would have to go through a lot to get to that point—betrayal by his jealous brothers, slavery in Egypt, and then imprisonment there. Perhaps God gave Joseph the dreams to sustain him during the hard times.
When Joseph’s dreams came true and he stood second only to Pharaoh in Egypt, his brothers feared that he would take his revenge against them. That’s when Joseph told them not to worry. They intended to harm him but God intended it for good. And who was he to second-guess God? God took what was evil and turned it into that which made Joseph’s purpose in life possible.
You may not have had a dream, but God has a plan for your life, a plan to accomplish some good. We are “God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10). Further, we know that God has given us gifts of the Spirit (I Peter 4:10) and what are they for other than to accomplish some good in the world?
Like Joseph, however, you may have to go through some hard times in order to get to the point where your gifts really begin to bear some fruit. During those times you can be assured that “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).
God can take what is difficult and evil in your life and turn it into the very thing that makes your purpose in life possible.
As we find ourselves sitting in the bottom of a well or falsely imprisoned, don’t waste time wondering why God allowed it to happen. Just know that even if He showed you the path He has for you, you either wouldn’t believe it or it would scare you to death. Read the story of Joseph in Genesis and see if you think Joseph could have seen himself saving the world from famine while left for dead, naked in the bottom of a well. You think your having a bad day?!?!
Join me in casting my gaze to the Heavens, because all we can do in a well is look up!!!