Friday, May 12, 2006

God's Goodness

A famine had hit the land and we read in Genesis 47, the people of Egypt had spent all their money for food and now were forced to give up their land and finally themselves. There was nothing more they could give. The amazing contrast are God's people, namely Israel (Jacob) and his family as they are satisfied with the abundance of God. God in his good providence had sent Joseph many years earlier so God's people and promises could be preserved. When Joseph sends for his family, he provides them with a variety and abundance of food to eat and carts for them to ride into Egypt. You can imagine the procession as they travel in their limousines and ask to one another to pass the shrimp.

Even further, upon arrival Pharaoh says to Joseph's family: settle your father and your brothers in the best part of the land. Let them live in Goshen. It is as if Pharaoh is scratching his head, running through the various parts of the land - Where is the best land? Where? They have livestock, they need lots of room, they need water - where? Goshen - give them Goshen.

Isn't this a great picture of how God cares for His people? Even in struggles and pain and suffering, God's goodness is always abounding. In Revelation 2 we read of the suffering church in Smyrna that they were poor - the Greek word meaning they had nothing - zero in the bank. But immediately Jesus says - yet you are rich. In contrast, the church in Laodicea was rich in material possessions but were poor and in danger of being spit out.

We have a hard time with this but it is God's truth. In the midst of suffering, God's goodness outmatches and outlasts the world's best. Our God, who simply astounds us day after day with His abundance, is worthy of praise because in a land of famine, he has provided a feast for us.

No comments: