After Joseph was betrayed horrifically by his brothers, I was amazed and challenged by his attitude. After being sold as a slave because of their jealousy, Joseph finds himself second in charge over all of Egypt and after his father dies, his brothers begs for forgiveness.

Joseph’s response is surprising, “Don’t be afraid. Do I act for God? Don’t you see, you planned evil against me but God used those same plans for my good, as you see all around you right now—life for many people. Easy now, you have nothing to fear; I’ll take care of you and your children.” (Genesis 50:19-20, MSG)

It is not my job to judge anyone, even those who hurt, deceive an stab me in the back. That’s Gods job. The only thing I am required to do is forgive and to continue to forgive and forgive some more. It’s easy to look down on others based on their looks, actions, relationships, attitudes, clothes, wealth (or lack of), belongings, technology, beliefs, words, hobbies, talents, accidents and deliberate wrong doings. The list goes on. However, I find it refreshing that it’s not up to me to "make sure justice is done” – the only one who should be doing that is out loving, merciful and gracious creator.

Forgive, don’t judge – pretty please.

Reflections on Genesis 32

Genesis 32:9-10 (MSG)“And then Jacob prayed, “God of my father Abraham, God of my father Isaac, God who told me, ‘Go back to your parents’ homeland and I’ll treat you well.’ I don’t deserve all the love and loyalty you’ve shown me. When I left here and crossed the Jordan I only had the clothes on my back, and now look at me—two camps!”

This is just before the well known story when Jacob wrestles with God. Jacob is fearing for his life and the life of his family and livestock – the brother he betrayed and stole from is headed his way. He sets a plan in motion, sending his camps and family ahead. 

This prayer reminded me of Gods unconditional grace and that I must come before him humble. Like Jacob, I don’t deserve all the love and loyalty God has shown me. Yet, despite my depravity and disobedience, Jesus allowed me to receive the ultimate blessing; perfect peace and a relationship with my creator (Romans 5:8). This part of Gods nature, offering us undeserved favour, is continually revealed throughout history.

I praise my Creator for the blessing of being loved and chosen to have an untainted relationship with him, even though, like Jacob I don’t deserve it.