Life happens. The year 2015 brought to me changes I was not expecting nor did I think I deserved! After 45 incredible years of working for one company, my successful career all came to an end as my job was transferred to China. Then three months later I injured my back and a herniated disc put me in an emergency room with the most pain I had ever experienced in my entire life! I’ve lived with pain now for four months and sometimes I ask, “Why me Lord?”. Can I get a witness?
Joseph in the Old Testament must have asked himself that question a million times! That is until God opened his eyes to see what HE was accomplishing in all of the ups and downs dealt to him. A quick review of his story begins with his father Jacob giving him a “coat of many colors” which he used to brag to his brothers. He told how in a dream that he saw them one day bowing down to him! They later took the opportunity to sell him to a caravan of Ishmaelites and Joseph’s “why me” story began. He was purchased by Potiphar and thought his luck had changed, that is until as the manager of Potiphar’s entire household, his wife unjustly accused Joseph of trying to molest her which landed him in a dark prison. Why me Lord?
While in prison he successfully interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh’s baker and cupbearer. He thought they would remember him once they realized his interpretations had come true, but instead he was forgotten. Why me Lord? Many years passed and Pharaoh’s cupbearer remembered Joseph when Pharoah had dreams that no one could interpret. Joseph interpreted the dreams and was vaulted to second in command of all of Egypt! When his 10 brothers came to Egypt for food they bowed before Joseph, not recognizing him as their long lost brother. After a series of tricks that Joseph played on them they finally recognized this man was their brother and expected a deserved punishment. But instead Joseph realized that the hand of God was at work in all that had transpired. Look at his response as he finally revealed his identity to his brothers in Genesis chapter forty five.
Joseph could stand it no longer. There were many people in the room, and he said to his attendants, “Out, all of you!” So he was alone with his brothers when he told them who he was. Then he broke down and wept. He wept so loudly the Egyptians could hear him, and word of it quickly carried to Pharaoh’s palace. “I am Joseph!” he said to his brothers. “Is my father still alive?” But his brothers were speechless! They were stunned to realize that Joseph was standing there in front of them. “Please, come closer,” he said to them. So they came closer. And he said again, “I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into slavery in Egypt. But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who sent me here ahead of you to preserve your lives. This famine that has ravaged the land for two years will last five more years, and there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. God has sent me ahead of you to keep you and your families alive and to preserve many survivors. So it was God who sent me here, not you! And he is the one who made me an adviser to Pharaoh—the manager of his entire palace and the governor of all Egypt. (Gen 45:1-8)
Life happens…. and God is the Planner, the Author, and the Sustainer of it all. He knows the beginning of our lives and the end. It is up to us to trust Him through it all. I just thought of the old song by Andrae Crouch with lyrics that go like this.
I’ve had many tears and sorrows
I’ve had questions for tomorrow
There’ve been times
I didn’t know right from wrong
But in ev’ry situation
God gave blessed consolation
That my trials come
To only make me strong
Through it all through it all
I’ve learned to trust in Jesus
I’ve learned to trust in God
Through it all through it all
I’ve learned to depend upon His word
Tomorrow I go for an epidural shot into the area of my back causing the pain. I’ll also meet with some friends this week to brainstorm about the next chapter of my work-a-day life. I do covet your prayers. Who knows what God has planned? But through it all I plan to trust in Jesus.
Walk with the King today! And be a blessing!
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