Thursday, June 4, 2015

Holding Grudges!

But Joseph replied, “Don’t be afraid of me. Am I God, that I can punish you? You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. No, don’t be afraid. I will continue to take care of you and your children.” So he reassured them by speaking kindly to them. (Genesis 50:19-21 NLT)

I have been spending time reading Genesis. I love this book and the fantastic stories of the beginning of life on this planet. This verse is at the end of the story of Joseph and his being sold into slavery by his brothers. We could learn much from these verses. Joseph had every right to punish his brothers. No one would have blamed him if he would have severely punished them. He chose not to because he understood Gods plan. 

Holding grudges is the norm. Getting even is standard operating procedure for our society. You have heard it said, "An eye for an eye....." But Jesus taught a different way. In a time when our nation is greatly divided, when we really hate each other, we need to constantly remind ourselves of Joseph and how he treated his brothers. We need to build bridges with our enemies and not tear them down. We need to build relationships in positive ways and love our neighbors. Itš not easy when our disagreements are major, when our beliefs are so far apart. But, those differences are not a reason to hate, to judge, and to punish. Judgment and punishment belongs to the Lord alone!

Dear Lord, Thank you for the wonderful messages from the book of Genesis. They are old stories but they are just as relevant today as ever before. May we learn from these stories. May we apply the truths of the bible to our lives today. Thank you Lord for your love. Thank you for your mercy and grace. May we share that same love, mercy, and grace with those we see today. Amen!

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