He Gets the Last Word!

I think often of the Scripture that boldly states, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good …” – Genesis 50:20.

How many times has that verse crossed your mind?!

This verse is from the story of the Old Testament Joseph who was betrayed by his brothers, was sold into slavery, was accused of sexual harassment, spent time in an Egyptian prison and then rose to be the second in command in all of Egypt!

When Joseph was finally reunited with his brothers, decades after their despicable act of deception, he was able to comfort and encourage them with these words that often ring in my heart,

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.”

Although you may have been through truly difficult days in your life, I am fairly certain that few of us present a resume’ as tragic as did Joseph.

Hated by his brothers.

Mocked by his brothers.

Betrayed by his brothers.

Thrown into a pit.

Sold into slavery.

Joseph’s brothers told their father that Joseph had been torn apart by a wild and vicious beast.

Accused of sexual harassment by an older woman.

Spent years in a cold, damp prison although he was undeniably innocent.

Lived his entire adult life far away from his family.

If God is able to turn the appalling circumstances of Joseph’s life into something good then I guess He is well able to do it for me as well.

I am reminded of all of the times in my life when someone was less than kind to me but that God used it for His purposes and for His glory.

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.”

I am humbly aware of all of those moments in my life when I wondered where God was and yet He was there all the time … working all things together for my good and for His glory.

“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love the Lord, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28

Do you know that?  Are you assured of it?  Or do you merely “hope” that God works all things together for good?

I remind myself on a daily basis that God always has the last word … and His Word is always a good word!

When I was diagnosed with cancer in November of 2014, I was incredulous!  No!  There must be some mistake!  Certainly there must be another test the doctors could perform … another specialist I could see … perhaps the brilliant doctors had misread the results.

I wonder if Joseph, while in the pit, felt the gut-wrenching and heartbreaking panic that I did when I heard the word “cancer”.

Joseph’s story didn’t end in the pit and my story won’t end with cancer because Joseph and I both serve a God Who is working all things together for our good.  The end of our story will be good because we serve a God Who knows of no other way to be than extravagantly and perpetually good.

It is the new theme of my life!

How does God work something like cancer together for good?!

I believe that the enemy wanted to end my life with cancer just like the enemy wanted to end Joseph’s life in the pit … in slavery … in prison.

But the Lord was with Joseph and the Lord was with me.

Although the enemy wanted to end my life, paralyze the ministry and mute my message of joy, God has worked it together for good!

God tapped me on the shoulder early in the battle with cancer and whispered in my ear, “I am going to use this experience to get you younger and healthier!  I promise!”

God took me in His arms and gently declared, “This battle will strengthen you and not weaken you!”

And so, I have worked together with God at becoming the healthiest 60-year-old woman on the face of the planet.  I have changed my eating habits, my exercise habits and my thinking habits.  I have changed the products that I put on my body and no longer eat soy or sugar.

My weight has gone down … my blood pressure is nearly normal … and I am a force to be reckoned with!

I have worked with God and God has worked with me!  Oh!  The wonder of it all!

You know, when Joseph was in prison, he had to work with God as well.  He had to defy the pit, slavery and prison and determine to strengthen his faith and become the man that God wanted him to be.

Many of us whine our way through prison … but not Joseph … he declared, “The Lord is with me!”

Many of us are incredulous at the unfairness of the pit … but not Joseph … he was more aware of His good God than he was of his abusive brothers!

Most of us when we hear the word, “Cancer” feel that life has just slapped us in the face but I determined that God would use me in the darkest hour of my life!

The enemy wanted to end my life … but God used cancer to get my attention and to renew my strength!

And so, on this day, nearly a year after my diagnosis, I declare with Joseph, “Cancer … what you meant for evil in my life … God used for good!”

So there, devil!  Take that, deceiver!

What are you going through today?  Are you walking a difficult road like Joseph did?  I want you to know that God is with you and that He is intent on working even this together for your highest good!

It is what He does best!