As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.
Genesis 50:20 ESV
Trusting God is sometimes hard . . . trusting people who are “God’s messengers” in our lives . . . that’s another story.
Joseph lived a life of which great novels and award winning movies are made. He was the favorite younger son of a large family. He was favored by his earthly father and his Heavenly Father. He was hated by his brothers. His brothers faked his death and sold him into slavery. Even as a slave, he distinguished himself as a leader, rose to a place of prominence and then was falsely accused of rape. He was given insight from God, again rose to a position of power and became one of the greatest leaders of one of the powerful nations in history.
In Joseph’s story, God is revealed as a behind the scenes Divine Chess player moving pieces that would bring about His ultimate plan. Our Sovereign multi-tasker has insight and impact over all time. He omniscient perception has been, is and will always be.
God’s Good Purpose. By today’s standards, Joseph was a victim. The actions of his brothers and enemies were unfair and unfounded. Their deceptive reactions delivered disastrous results. Joseph’s brothers devised evil against him . . . God designed and directed the evil for good. As Joseph placed his trust in God, his perspective changed from a victim to a victor. Paul reminds us, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (Rom 8:28 NLT). In our lack of patience and limited perception, we begin to lose confidence in God’s plan. Our failure to trace God’s moving hand requires our faith to trust His heart. Elizabeth Elliott wrote, “Faith does not eliminate questions. But faith knows where to take them.” God always has a plan for His people.
God’s Guiding Presence. God’s omniscient perception is always complimented by his omnipresence . . . He is with you. George Washington said, “Providence has at all times been my only dependence, for all other resources seemed to have failed us.” Moses reassured the Israelites, “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” (Deut 31:8 NLT) The Sovereign Savior has been with you in your yesterday, is with you in your today and will be with you in your tomorrow. The writer of Hebrews reminds us of God’s promise, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Heb 13:5 ESV)
God’s Greater Purpose. Joseph’s pain and prominence were all part of God’s plan for deliverance and destiny. He depended on God’s grace and determined God’s greater good. Joseph perceived God’s purpose, “He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.” (Gen 50:20 NLT) Young writes, “This is how you foil the works of evil, growing in grace through the very adversity that was meant to harm you.” Paul tells us, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” (Phil 1:6 NLT). God is working in ways that we cannot see to do things that we cannot do.
C.S. Lewis wrote, “God, who foresaw your tribulation, has specially armed you to go through it, not without pain, but without stain.”
In our struggles and suffering, God has a good and greater purpose . . . and He guides us with His presence.
Others may devise evil . . . God has destined good.