Tuesday, January 27, 2015

the right place at the right time...


Can I tell you how scary that word is to me? It definitely wasn't my pick--kind of like when this blog started with the word faithful. As I've mentioned lots of times (and I apologize if I sound like a broken record), trust doesn't come easily to me. It means I have to rely on someone else...someone who isn't me.

That's hard to swallow.
I've always wanted to do things myself, a trait that started when I was little and hasn't stopped. I've wanted to earn things by my own merit, to accomplish things using my own hands and through my own power.

I listened to the last of a sermon series by Tony Evans the other day, and in it he was wrapping up Joseph's story. He pointed out that Joseph didn't have any qualifications or connections, and that lots of people would say that he ended up in the position to provide food for his brothers and their families because he just happened to be in the right place at the right time.

People say that all the time, don't they? Good things happen to people who are in the right place at the right time. Brother Evans pointed something out though--how in the world did Joseph end up in the right place at the right time? To paraphrase him just a bit:
He wouldn't have been able to provide for his brothers if he hadn't been second in charge in Egypt.
Joseph wouldn't have been second in charge over all of Egypt if he hadn't interpreted the Pharoh's dream.
He wouldn't have interpreted Pharoh's dream if he hadn't met the cup bearer and baker.
He wouldn't have met them if he hadn't been thrown in the dungeon.
He wouldn't have been thrown in the dungeon if he hadn't been falsely accused by Potiphar's wife.
He wouldn't have been falsely accused if he hadn't been put in charge of Potiphar's household.
He wouldn't have been put in charge if Potiphar hadn't bought him.
He couldn't have been bought as a slave if he hadn't been sold to Egyptian slavers.
He wouldn't have been sold if his brothers hadn't thrown him into a pit.
He wouldn't have been thrown into a pit if his brothers hadn't been jealous of him.
His brothers wouldn't have been jealous if he hadn't been showing off the coat his dad gave him. 

Yes, Joseph was in the right place at the right time...because everything in his life had led him to that place. Even the things that others had meant for evil, God had worked out for Joseph's benefit and in order for His purpose to be carried out. Joseph was in the right place at the right time because God had orchestrated his life so that he would be there.

Right now, things are a bit stressful in my household. Nathan and I are both wrapping up grad school, but we have no idea where we are going when this summer rolls around. I've been more than a bit worried about it, even though I've been trying not to get too stressed out. When I was listening to the end of the story of Joseph's life, I was reminded of something: when I got the job teaching at Lead Hill, it was through nothing I did. I didn't even know there was a job opening there. I hadn't applied; I got a call one day asking if I would be interested in coming in for an interview.

I say that to say this: when I look back at my life, it's full of times when I couldn't control what was happening and thought things were spinning out of control. Through all of it, though, even the times that others meant for evil, I can see how God worked in the middle of it to bring about His purpose. If He has done that time and time again (without my help, I have to admit), what's to keep Him from doing it now?

It's a hard, beautiful thing.

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