Acts 7:9 states: “And the patriarchs becoming envious, sold Joseph into Egypt. But God was with him.” I have to confess that when I read this a few days ago I thought just the opposite. It does not sound like God was with him. He was envied by his brothers. His success was their failure. His blessing did not please the people around Joseph but provoked them to sell him as slave after discussing killing him. God was with him? God gave Joseph a dream, a vision of his future that became the worst thing that ever happened to him. Before the vision, he was the beloved of his father, successful in the family enterprise, a leader of the brothers, and positioned for an incredible future. After the vision, Joseph was alone, homeless, a slave, separated from everything that he had ever known, and without hope. God was with him?
Yes, God was with him. God always has a different perspective than we do. He sees the big picture. He positions us for His future plan. His planned future is always better than our planned future. Joseph would flourish in Egypt in the household of Potifer only to be falsely accused of attempted rape of Potifer’s wife and thrown in prison. In prison, Joseph would have another vision. This vision would eventually deliver him. God was with him but it did not look like it. Upon Joseph’s release from prison, he was named the second highest ranking government official in all of Egypt. But Joseph would not return home to find his family. Rather, he started a new family and named his first born son Manasseh which means forgetting. He sought to leave behind all of his father’s household including the vision given to him there. Joseph did not know that God was with him.
Have you ever watched your life and become convinced that God was not with you? Have your circumstances gone from bad to worse? Have your relationships been continually stressed and your ministries frustrated? Joseph experienced all of this but God was with him.
I want to remind you today that if you are a child of God then He is with you and will never leave you. Your ministry may go bad, your relationships devolve, your body perish, and your visions be forgotten. But God is with you. He will bring these visions to pass. He will complete the work that He started in you. He will lead you through the wilderness instead of leaving you in the wilderness. You can’t look at your circumstances to know if God is with you. You must live by faith and know that He is with you. He will bring it to pass. Trust Him today for He is with you.