When I was in high school, I can still remember working at my parent's dry cleaners and listening to a sermon about Joseph on Moody Radio. It was a series about Joseph, and I would anxiously wait to hear the next sermon. As the pastor spoke about Joseph's life, tears would flow. Thankfully, the hot, humid, summer weather and the unbearable temperature inside of the dry cleaning plant made my teary face not so noticeable. My question was always the same: how could Joseph have suffered so much injustice and still looked to God with a trusting heart?
When my children were younger, we came across a dvd about Joseph. I think we bought it at Costco for a great deal! It was titled: Joseph - King of Dreams. I used to love watching that dvd with my children. The story would come to the part where Joseph would sing the song, "You Know Better Than I" and I would be in tears. The kids would always ask, "Mom, why are you crying?"
Joseph was sold into slavery because of his brothers' jealous hearts. He was put in prison because he did the right thing in refusing Potiphar's wife's advances. Yet, in spite of all this, he blossomed. Whether he was in Potiphar's house or in prison, Joseph chose to follow God, no matter what. People saw that there was something about Joseph that set him apart. That is why they trusted him and gave him so much responsibility. There was no doubt that God was with Joseph.
From the pit that he was thrown into, by his brothers, to the pit of being a slave, to the pit of being in prison, Joseph was trained in pits and trials. He wasn't aware of it, but each pit brought something new to learn. Each trial brought new training that he might not have perceived. It seems that Joseph chose to learn and do his best during these difficult times. Nothing was lost because he seemed to have given in to God's plan.
What seemed meaningless turned into something of great importance. What seemed like a great waste turned into something that was of great worth. Each pit helped him to take in the training that he needed to save nations from extinction/starvation to becoming an official second only to Pharaoh. Hardship helped this spoiled, favored child turn into a man that would save hundreds of thousands and would help lead a powerful nation.
As I read about Joseph, I started to ask myself whether I had fully given in to God's plan. There are a lot of things that I have given in to His hands: like my cancer. But, there are still many little things in my life that I am still struggling to hang on to. Not wanting to see the whole picture of God's plan, but just wanting to hang on to them. Sometimes just making excuses. You would think that someone with stage 4 breast cancer would have given everything up to God at the beginning of her diagnosis. Nope, I'm still a human being capable of so much sin and selfishness.
Another thing that came to mind as I read the story of Joseph was this: Am I blossoming in all the situations that I am currently in? My honest answer: No. But I do want to blossom in all situations! I don't understand everything God is leading me through this cancer, but I do know that I want to be in the center of God's will. Cancer can't stop me from being obedient to His will and doing what I can, wherever I am.
All I can pray:
Lord, go ahead of me and prepare the way.
Give me eyes and the will to follow You wherever You lead.
Help me to learn from every situation
and to blossom wherever You place me.
I've put this on my blog before, but I will do it again.