I’ve been preaching on the story of Joseph the past few Sundays.
(The one with the fancy coat, not the one with the fancy Son.)
I keep coming back to the moment when Joseph, rejected by his brothers, is thrown into a cistern and left for dead.
Or would have been, had some slave traders not come along.
A cistern is a hand dug well. This one in particular was dry.
Can you imagine Joseph crying out to his brothers? Slowly realizing they weren’t joking.
Contemplating his own stuck-ness.
If Joseph is at all like me I’ll bet he tried to attract attention, tried to climb out, maybe threw a temper tantrum or two.
I’ll bet he moved from frustration, to realization, to desperation.
And then, when he finally realized how deep in trouble he was, then, perhaps, he earnestly prayed to God.
One of my favorite Psalms describes such a prayer:
To you, Lord, I called;
to the Lord I cried for mercy:
“What is gained if I am silenced,
if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise you?
Will it proclaim your faithfulness?
Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me;
Lord, be my help.”
–Psalm 30: 8-10
It’s a sad, but deep truth: Few of us truly appreciate our purpose in life–to proclaim God’s faithfulness– until we are at risk of losing it.
Fortunately, this wasn’t the end for Joseph.
Call it a “death bed conversion” (I prefer a “deep well revelation”) –but Joseph’s whole outlook and purpose seems to come into focus only after this cistern experience.
I’m glad for Joseph. But what about you?
Are you ready to commit to a life of faithfulness, or are you waiting until you hit bottom?
You may find your way to God regardless,
but to get the most out of the life you’ve been given,
Praise God today!
(Don’t wait until you’re six feet under.)
Have a great week,