After Jacob dies, his sons fear that Joseph will seek revenge against them for selling him into slavery. But Joseph tells them not to fear. He assures them that he will provide for them and their families. We might wonder, how could Joseph forgive his brothers so completely? The answer lies in his words quoted above. He does not deny the wrong they did, but he sees the bigger picture now. God used their wicked deed to bring about a greater good: the saving of God’s people from famine.
The old Portuguese proverb expresses this belief well: “God writes straight with crooked lines.” Even the imperfections, failings and evil of human beings can aid to bring about God’s beautiful designs. Let us recall this when life does not go the way we want or plan. From ugliness, God can bring forth beauty; from failure, success; from death, life; from evil, good.
Living Faith provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. Published new each quarter, these reflections are written by women and men from a variety of backgrounds - lay people as well as clergy and religious. Learn more.
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