Do you see the Lord in the circumstances of your life? Our God is always at work. It is evident that He allows things to happen in our lives to get our attention. I want you to notice the work God did in the lives of Joseph’s brothers by reading Genesis 42:1-28. Take special note of the question in verse twenty-eight when they realized the money they had brought to purchase their food with was restored in their sacks, “What is this that God hath done unto us?” These fellows said to themselves, “We see God’s hand in this. What is He saying to us? What is this work that He is doing? Why is He allowing this to happen to us? We do not understand what is happening, but we know that God is surely in this.”
I want to remind you that God is working in the life of every person. You may see Him at work or you may not see Him at work, but God is at work. How does God work in our lives?
God Deals With Us in Love
When we think of this question, “What is this that God hath done unto us?” let us keep in mind that God always deals in love. We get the idea at times that God has forsaken us or God is doing something to us that is awful. Some ask, “Lord, why did You allow such a thing to happen to me?” Remember that God is dealing with us in love. Do not allow the Devil to blind you to the goodness of God. The “goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance” (Romans 2:4).
God Works to Bring Us to Himself
Something else we must remember is that God’s intention is to bring men to Himself. The Bible says in Exodus 19:4, “Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles’ wings, and brought you unto myself.” As you consider what is going on in your life, in your home, in our world, whatever thoughts are racing through your mind, remember that God is dealing with you in love and His purpose is to bring you to Himself.
God Causes Us to Realize Our Need
In the account of Joseph and his family in Genesis 42:1-5, we see that they were faced with a great need. There was a famine in the land. There was hunger in the land. A great need had arisen. Word reached Jacob that there was food down in Egypt. Of all places, Egypt had become the breadbasket for the world during this famine. Perhaps at this particular time, they did not see the Lord’s hand in the matter, but it was God who had brought about the famine.
Would it not be wonderful if in all the glory days of our lives, when the sun is shining brightly and everything is going well, we trusted God with all our strength and might and lived for the Lord daily with all the desire possible? But it does not typically happen that way. It is during the days of darkness and the hours of great difficulty, during days of affliction when things go wrong, that we are made to realize we have a need, and we turn our hearts to the Lord.
God Reminds Us of Our Deeds
Try to imagine what was taking place in Egypt during that time. Thousands of people were pouring into Egypt for food. Joseph had been appointed by Pharaoh to administrate the dispersing of the food. This famine brought visitors from other countries to Egypt where the food was. What a flood of emotion must have filled Joseph’s heart when he saw his brothers coming toward him that day!
Joseph’s brothers had betrayed Joseph in the worst way possible. They sold him as a slave and then lied about his disappearance to their father. Joseph may have thought he would never see any of his family again. Now, in Egypt, the tables were turned. The Lord has a special way of reminding us of our deeds. He is a personal God, and He deals with us in a personal way. As Joseph spake roughly to his brethren, he said, “You’re spies and you know you are spies.” They answered, “No, no, that’s not why we are here. We’re here because we are hungry and we need food.”
Joseph says again, “No, you’re spies.” He drives it home again and again until they are reminded so well of the awful thing they did to their brother. They had accused Joseph of being a spy for their father so many years before, and now the painful memory was revived in their minds.
How many times has God said to you and to me through something He has stirred inside of us, “Here is something you need to care for. Here is something you need to bring to the Lord. Here is something that is wrong and you know it. You need to get it right with God”? How many times has the Lord done that in our lives, and we have done nothing about it? We cannot carry these things in our lives that are unforgiven and unconfessed and expect to have God’s blessing and God’s peace. Therefore, He reminds us of our deeds.
The God I know and love and serve is the God who works in the life of every person to bring that person to Himself. “What is this that God hath done unto me?” Maybe you are asking yourself this question at this turbulent time in our world. We must realize that God wants to show us our need, remind us of our deeds, and use those things to bring us to Himself.