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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

No Ordinary Love

Geneis 42:1-45:15
LOVE a good love story.  And our reading today definitely qualifies as a love story.
Not the kind of love story you may be thinking about though; the one between a man and a woman. No, I am talking about the one between a sinner and a savior.
If you are new to reading the Bible one thing you will learn as you study it is that the Old Testament is a shadow or typology of the New Testament.
A typology is where things in the Old Testament represent things in the New.
Maggie explained this with Isaac and Rebekah in her post last week here.  And we are going to learn TONS of typologies as we journey through the wilderness with Jacob’s descendants (aka, the children of Israel).  But we have about another 400 years to read through before we get there.
Every time I read Genesis 45 I always try and imagine standing there watching the scene unfold as Joseph (the savior), with love, mercy, grace and forgiveness, reveals who he is to his brothers (the sinners).
Joseph freely forgave his brothers of hating him, resenting him, hurting him, selling him and lying about him.
That is a picture, a typology, of what Christ has done, and continues to do with us.
Joseph had every right to turn his brothers away; they were unworthy of his grace and mercy.  But he chose to embrace them instead.
Jesus has every right to turn us away; we too are unworthy of His grace and mercy.  But He choses to embrace us instead.
But Joseph’s brothers had a choice to make too, and that was the choice to accept the forgiveness their brother was offering.
Thankfully they did, because we are going to see how the salvation and future of a nation is built upon the bedrock of their forgiveness and letting go of the past.
Over the weekend I read a book titled Beyond Ordinary- When a good marriage just isn’t good enough. It is a book that chronicles the journey of a couple who beat the odds after years of hurt, disillusionment and finally an infidelity in their marriage.
Sunday night I tweeted a quote from Trisha Davis, the wife and co-author.  She said, When you forgive, the person who hurt you doesn't win- Christ wins. 
It can be so hard to offer forgiveness, but do you know what else I have found to be true, it can be just as hard to accept forgiveness.  You know you don’t deserve it.  You are not worthy of it.  But when we accept it, just like Joseph’s brothers, our salvation and future is built upon it.
So my prayer for us today is that we will be able to offer our forgiveness... or maybe ask for forgiveness... and then accept forgiveness.  In the end, you will be writing your own love story.
And I LOVE a good love story,

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