"So it was God who sent me here, not you!
And he is the one who made me an adviser to Pharaoh-- the manager of his entire palace and the governor of all Egypt."
Genesis 45:8 NLT (emphasis, mine)
There are so many things I absolutely LOVE about the power of small group (more than I have room for here!), but one of my most favorites is the array of wisdom and experience each and every woman brings to the table each week.
Our current study is on the topic of rejection, which leaves much to discuss. Last night as we were delving into everything from trust issues to friendship breakups, my sweet friend Joni spoke a nugget of truth into the air that left us all rubbing our chins and saying, "Hmm."
She said (and this could be botched slightly, so forgive me):
"It's not the events of our life that shape us-- it's our perception of those events."
I must admit I had to think about that one for a bit. So many quotes created to move me forward often leave me standing still in my tracks because they're simply not true.
But this one does not fall in that category.
Joseph's life is pristine example of this truth. And, oh, have I mentioned how much I love Joseph's story? Probably because it seems much like my own, at times... although, it took me years to come to the conclusion He did.
Let's re-hash Joseph's life:
Thrown in a well- check.
Sold into slavery- check.
Lied about- check.
Thrown into prison- check.
If he wanted to, he had a lot he could be bitter about.
Joseph could have chosen to view his life's events through his own, limited perspective, then spent the rest of his life asking God, "Why?"
"Why did that happen, God?"
"God, you could have stopped _______."
"Why did you allow this to happen that way?"
(These are the ruts I often find myself stuck in.)
But Joseph had a higher perspective. Joseph looked back on his life and didn't see himself as a victim-- hated, rejected, despised and forgotten.
Instead he saw the hand of God, weaving every person, promotion, trial and triumph together into a story for His glory.
So, instead of condemning his brothers for starting the strange chain of both unfortunate and fortunate events in his life, Joseph is able to say, emphatically, "...it was God who sent me here, not you! And he is the one who made me an adviser to Pharoah."
One of my favorite quotes from our current small group read says, "It's impossible to hold up the banners of victim and victory at the same time." (Lysa TerKeurst, "Uninvited").
Sometimes I have a difficult time not falling into a victim mentality when life isn't going my way. After all, it's easier to be a victim.
In these times like these my heart-wrenching cry to God is, that of David's in Psalm 61:2, "From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
The rock that is higher than I, Jesus. The ultimate Victor.
Who exists outside of time and space and sees my life from beginning to end.
Who allowed this for my good, and His glory.
And He is using every part to create a beautiful God-story.
Dwelling in Him,
A little about me...
Hi, I'm Katie!
Wife to Craig, mom of three, author, writer, Jesus-follower, Bible teacher, and coffee enthusiast.
Follow me as I follow Christ and share my heart throughout the journey.
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