Joseph Wept

“…the Lord was with him and gave him success in everything he did.” (Genesis 39:3)

coatJoseph was sold into slavery by his own brothers.  It must have been traumatic to be given against his will to a strange people, traveling to an unfamiliar land.  Through the many trials he faced, Joseph remained steadfast in his loyalty to God.  At the same time, the Bible says that God was with Joseph.  Joseph went on to become the second-in-command next to Pharaoh, King of Egypt.  When he saw his brothers again it was during a time of severe famine, Joseph had risen to a prominent position in Egypt and was in charge of distributing the food that his brothers had journeyed to buy.  Joseph didn’t disclose his identity right away and his brothers did not recognize him.  When he finally did reveal who he was, he wept so loudly that those in another room heard him.  The Bible says that when Joseph’s brothers found out, they were terrified.  Joseph told them not to be angry with themselves for what they had done, and that although they intended to harm him,  God intended it for good; the saving of many lives.  Joseph’s tears get me.  Through the years he kept his integrity, had been a loyal servant, and was determined to fulfill any tasks he was given.  At the same time, he had been forsaken by his own family, enslaved, and imprisoned.  I am glad that God included Joseph’s weeping in the account of his life.  Sometimes there just aren’t words.


mural-1331783__480Sometimes, when I have felt anger, I have believed it was creating a divide between God and me.  But, when I think about it, if every time I experience negative emotions, God turns away, it doesn’t give us a chance to build a real relationship.  How many people in your life do you consider true friends with whom you only share the more pleasant aspects of your personality; only your best and cheeriest self?  The people I consider my closest friends have seen me at my worst, and loved me anyway.  I think the key to dealing with anger and other unpleasant emotions is to take them to God and to be completely honest with Him about what we’re feeling.  It means talking to Him about even the things we feel almost too ashamed to say out loud.  It means spilling our guts so that He can begin to fill us with something new.

“For he loves us with unfailing love; the Lord’s faithfulness endures forever.  Praise the Lord!” – Psalm 117:2