Sunday, June 19, 2011

Scripture Sunday: Forgiveness

....he said to the steward of his house, "Take these men to my house, slaughter and animal and prepare dinner; they are to eat with me at noon."
Genesis 43:16 (NIV)

Then Joseph said to his brothers, "Come close to me."  When they had done so, he said, "I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt!  And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you.......So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God.
Genesis 45:4-5, 8 (NIV)

If you remember, the last few weeks I've shared how Joseph was sold into slavery by his own brothers & was thrown into prison after being wrongfully accused, but through it all, he sought to honor & obey God.  In return, God blessed & honored him, making him a ruler in Egypt!  Well, a time came when there was a severe famine, but because God had revealed to Joseph that there would be a terrible famine, Joseph was able to help Egypt prepare for the famine.  Eventually, surrounding countries began coming to Joseph to get some food.  And guess who was included in those who came?  Joseph's brothers!

Now Joseph could have held a grudge against them for their terrible treatment of him.  In fact, he could have even kept them from receiving food.  But instead, he was quick to forgive..........blessing them with food & even returning their payment.  He soon invited them for lunch, & when he told them who he was, he encouraged them to forgive themselves as well.  Wow!  What an example of forgiveness!  You see, Joseph knew that God had a plan & had worked good out of their evil.  He also knew that God had given him this opportunity to see his brothers & father again.  So he took full advantage of it by continuing to honor completely forgiving them.  And because of that, history was changed!  If Joseph had chosen to hold a grudge & had not lovingly invited his family back into his life, the story might have been much different.

May we all remember that not only does NOT forgiving alienate others from our life, but it also hurts ourselves.  After all, we're the ones holding those feelings in our heart. 

After God has so mercifully forgiven us, how can we not choose to forgive those around us?

Forgive, & watch God work out His wonderful plan!

{By the way, as I was referring to my calendar this week, I discovered that this Friday is "National Forgiveness Day." What perfect timing!  But I would like to suggest that every day be "forgiveness day"!} 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the post Shae, this one of life's most important hardest lessons to live each day but essential.