There are points in our lives where we can look back at difficult times and see how God has been with us. Not only that, but we can also see how He has taken things that seem terrible to not only reach us but to reach others as well. But, our attitude plays a role in this. Do we play the part of the victim and allow it to traumatize us for the rest of our lives while we wallow in bitterness and self-pity? Or do we play the part of victor through Christ and allow God's amazing power to do His infinitely wonderful work in our lives? Joseph's life is a perfect example of a series of events where he could have chosen to give up and become absorbed with feeling sorry for himself; instead he chose to see how God was at work. Please read Genesis 45:1-15.
If there was anyone who had a right to be self-absorbed in his troubles, it was Joseph. He was sold to slave traders by his own brothers. He was falsely accused by his master's wife and sent to jail. He provided leadership and wisdom in the jail, yet he was forgotten by others. Yet, he still believed that God was in control; he chose to believe that God hadn't forgotten him. He ended up revealing the meaning of the Pharaoh's dreams and found himself as governor over all of Egypt. He went from slave to prisoner to living in a palace. Isn't that amazing! He found himself in a position to enact revenge on his brothers, yet he recognized that it was because of God that he was where he was. This attitude allowed him to forgive rather than indulge in bitterness and anger. He recognized that God had His hand in this situation to save many. He told his brothers that God sent him there. But this also makes me think of someone else who lived this example for us.
Jesus came as a servant to this earth. Think on that for a moment. Our Creator, the Word made man, humbled himself and lived a life of servant to us. He served the very people He created. That is amazing to me. But that is not the only thing He did! He was accused by His own people, the very ones He had set apart, and found Himself with a death sentence. He could have ended it right there and shown His power, but He didn't want to benefit Himself, He was doing this for us. He allowed Himself to be falsely accused and took the punishment that was ours and died on the cross. He was forgotten by His accusers, but He rose again on the third day to show His victory over death. He ascended to Heaven in absolute glory, and He did all this to save us from the consequences of sin. And one day, we will all see Him in His glory; and those who believe and follow Him will get to be with Him.
Do you see the amazing example and attitude played out in Joseph? Do you see how Christ lived in a way that demands that attitude from all of us? After all, how could we possibly wallow in self-pity when Christ allowed it to happen? When we see that Christ could have risen above the suffering of this earth instead of living among us, how can we possibly be angry at God for our problems? I'm not minimizing our problems because some of our problems are huge. But, we don't have to let our problems control us. We can let Christ to control our hearts, for His ways are far beyond our comprehension. Yet, God gives us the Holy Spirit to help us understand. 1 Corinthians 2:16 says, "For, 'Who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to teach Him?' But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ." We cannot teach God about what He should do, but He teaches us by transforming our hearts and minds to that of Christ. We too, can ascend as victors by having the mind of Christ.
Are you operating with a human mind and attitude or with the mind and attitude of Christ?
This post is linked with Word Filled Wednesday and iFellowship Blog Hop.