After a bit of a break to try to get boxes moved and enough "stuff" settled to keep my sanity, I'm back on my morning routine...although at the moment, it's a bit more of a mid-morning routine. Early mornings have never really been my thing, but I'm not done trying on that score yet either. :)
**Special Public Service Announcement from my 15 year old daughter who SHOULD be doing the dishes, and is NOW on her way to do said dishes:*** Note: Genesis 44 does not actually say what she purports it to say, but some of it is true. Just not the "perfection" part. 😜
"Genesis 44 also shows that Noelle is the best person in the world. She is just so amazing. There's no one like her, she just makes everyone so happy and she's so talented; no one can measure up to the perfection of her perfection."
Genesis 44 shows a reunion of brothers, even though Israel's sons don't know that they have now come face to face with the brother they betrayed. It has to be a compelling moments for Joseph, thought, sitting there looking at his brothers, knowing who they are, and knowing that they have no idea who he might be.
He's observing, looking back through the years to his growing up experience. He's watching, and I can only imagine the kaleidoscope of emotions that is flowing over him in this moment. Probably anger, frustration, joy, grief...a whole bunch of complicated stuff. And as he watches, I can't help but imagine that there is a question in his mind: Have they changed, or are these the same men who left me to die in a pit and sold my life off for nothing? Out of jealousy?
Judah answers that question for Joseph when he speaks in verse 33: “So please, my lord, let me stay here as a slave instead of the boy, and let the boy return with his brothers." The man who once stood by and allowed his brother to be sold away without a thought now is willing to take the place of another brother. No doubt Joseph had gotten beyond some of his anger and bitterness - otherwise he would not have survived - but this had to be a big moment for him. Know that as God had been positioning him, He had also been changing those who hurt him.
That is a lesson we can all apply to our lives. People hurt us. They damage us. They do things that aren't right, and they aren't fair. By reasonable standards, they don't deserve forgiveness. But we are commanded to forgive. Why? Because it's what He requires. But why does He require it? Because He knows it is the only way that we can truly move forward and grow within ourselves.
I'm so thankful that God has brought me through some ugly times. I am equally thankful that I can look at people who have caused me pain and see that He is working on them too. I pray that everyone can have more Joseph moments, because those moments are what bring understanding to us in dark moments of time.