He was betrayed by his own family and sold into slavery. His brothers did not love him nor did they want him around. He was away from home, abandoned by his family...and yet...
The Lord was with him (Genesis 39:2).
He was falsely accused. A lady who was attracted to him attempted to lure him into an immoral relationship. Against the face of temptation, he stood strong. While he refused to give in, she refused to give up. Eventually, she would tell her husband and anyone who would listen that it was his fault. The reward for his faithfulness? Prison. He was falsely accused and wrongly imprisoned...and yet...
The Lord was with him (Genesis 39:21).
Joseph experienced being left alone in a pit, but he was never truly by himself. He suffered the shame of being put into prison for something he did not do, yet even in the jail, the Lord was by his side.
The Bible gives a clear pronouncement that while his family neglected him, Joseph was never abandoned by God. This communicates two critical truths for us to consider:
1) Even in the midst of heart-wrenching circumstances, the Lord is with His people.
It may be that your family has turned their back on you as Joseph's brothers did to him, but the Lord will be with you. You may have felt the sting of friends or co-workers selling you out or turning their back on you, but the Lord has not left your side. The world can threaten you, and it can come after you. However, the world is powerless to separate you from the presence and love of God.
2) Do not conclude that the presence of pain is evidence that God has left you.
How tempting it is to think that when life gets difficult and things do not go our way, that God has become disappointed in us or has turned away from us. Instead, the truth is that often the Lord has to get us to a position of complete dependence upon Him to understand that His grace indeed is sufficient for our every need.
So take heart, dear believer. The Lord will never leave you or forsake you. The world may seem to be finished with you or have no use for you. Your Heavenly Father sees you differently, though. As has been penned, "Your plans are still to prosper, You have not forgotten us, You are with us in the fire and the flood. You're faithful forever and perfect in love. You are sovereign over us."
Listen to the song entitled, "Sovereign Over Us" and be encouraged by the Lord's providential care for His children. And remember, no matter how low you may feel, the Lord is with you.
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