This verse has been on my mind so strongly lately. Recently, I have heard stories, over and over again, that reiterate the lesson found within this verse...
"You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people." ~Genesis 50:20 (NLT)
A minister falsely accused of a crime, didn't put all his energy into fighting the accusation, but rather accepted that God's will would be done. Now, having been in prison for years, a church has been started behind those bars due to his not despairing and seeing God's hand, even in such a tragic situation.
A child away from God, wandered much too far, and, while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, accidentally killed someone. Now, both him and his nephew, also in prison, have come back to God and many others are coming to know God through them as well.
These are both real stories that have been shared with me within the last couple of months.
Granted, every story doesn't climax with someone in prison. (Thank God!) These just happen to be the two examples I felt to share. And every story doesn't involve literal flesh and blood people causing the harm. Scripture says that, "we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." ~Ephesians 6:12
The scripture at the beginning of this blog is from the story of Joseph, and Joseph's story is just that...Joseph's story. In Joseph's story his brothers are the ones who did him wrong. God took that and used it. He used it to the extent that he was able to use Joseph to save the lives of a multiplied number of people, his brother's included.
Each one of us has our own story. The negative part of the story is not what matters. What matters is what you are willing to let God make of it. God can take anything and make something beautiful. He can take a royal disaster and make it into a royal masterpiece. But you have to be willing to hand it over to him...broken piece by broken piece.
You see, the picture of your future you had formed in your mind? It's nothing compared to what the master artist can design. As a matter of fact, you will probably not even recognize what he creates as you begin to hand over those pieces, one by one.
Frustration..hand it over.
Hatred...give it to Him.
Jealousy...let go of it.
Judgement...it's the Lord's.
Discouragement...lay it down.
Piece by piece by piece, watch God make something beautiful. Something others can look at and learn from. Something that can transform other's lives as well.
Piece by piece by piece.
While at LA Camp meeting recently I heard the song "Healing is Here" for the first time. Two particular lines stood out to me above all the rest:
You are the God of all power,Yes, it is God's will to allow us to go through tests and trials. If we continue to persevere, these will transform us into vessels more fit for his kingdom. However, it is also His will for our lives to be healed. It is especially His will that our lives are healed. The entire point of the sickness, trial, or test is for Him to receive glory through the healing.
And it is your will that my life is healed.
Whatever your circumstance, it IS God's will that your life is healed. It IS God's will that others benefit through your testimony. God is not blind to where you are or the circumstances that you face. He took Joseph from the pit to the palace, but He didn't do it overnight....
He did it piece by piece by piece. One act of obedience followed by another act of obedience. Back stabbed? No problem, shake it off. Forgotten? It's ok, it's not God's timing yet anyway.
Piece by piece by piece. Trust God. Obey God. And Watch God do what only HE can do.