Boulevard of Broken Dreams – Rollercoaster: Joseph

MAIN POINTS

  • Problem #1: jealousy: Genesis 37:4,11
  • Problem #2: injustice: Genesis 39:20
  • Problem #3: forgotten: Genesis 40
  • God brings favour over Joseph: 39:3-6; 21-23; 41:25, 28
  • God redeems evil plans: Genesis 50:20
  • Joseph’s outstanding reaction: Genesis 50:19-21

 

SO WHAT?

  • You live in a broken world – wronged: family/work
  • God is involved – trust – prayer
  • God is a redeemer – hope
  • Chose to love/forgive
  • Look outwards – encourage – serve
  • How do you react when wronged?
  • What can you learn form Christ about forgiveness?
  • How can you encourage others who find life difficult right now?
  • What are you doing about it?

 

QOUTES & STORIES

On June 17, 1966, two black men strode into the Lafayette Grill in Paterson, New Jersey, and shot three people to death. Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, a celebrated black boxer, and an acquaintance were falsely charged and wrongly convicted of the murders in a highly publicized and racially charged trial. The fiercely outspoken boxer maintained his claims of innocence and became his own jailhouse lawyer. After serving nineteen years, Carter was released. As a free man, Carter reflected on how he has responded to injustice in his life. The question invariably arises, it has before and it will again: “Rubin, are you bitter?” And in answer to that I will say, “After all that’s been said and done—the fact that the most productive years of my life, between the ages of twenty-nine and fifty, have been stolen; the fact that I was deprived of seeing my children grow up—wouldn’t you think I would have a right to be bitter? Wouldn’t anyone under those circumstances have a right to be bitter? In fact, it would be very easy to be bitter. But that has never been my nature, or my lot, to do things the easy way. If I have learned nothing else in my life, I’ve learned that bitterness only consumes the vessel that contains it. And for me to permit bitterness to control or to infect my life in any way whatsoever would be to allow those who imprisoned me to take even more than the 22 years they’ve already taken. Now that would make me an accomplice to their crime.

Richard Wurmbrand, who spent fourteen years suffering in a Communist prison, reminds all believers with less than ideal circumstances that “if the heart is cleansed by the love of Jesus Christ, and if the heart love Him, you can resist all tortures.” He says, “God will not judge us according to how much we endured, but how much we could love.” The love of God demonstrated in the lives of his people is potent. Wurmbrand gives an example: “A Christian was sentenced to death. Before being executed, he was allowed to see his wife. His last words to his wife were, ‘You must know that I die loving those who kill me. They don’t know what they do and my last request of you is to love them, too. Don’t have bitterness in your heart because they kill your beloved one. We will meet in heaven.’ These words impressed the officer of the secret police who attended the discussion between the two. After he told me the story in prison, where he had been put for becoming a Christian.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s