You will face a series of tests in your walk with Christ. There is no way to avoid it. How you view the tests will be determined by how you view God. If you see him in the wrong way, you will see your trial in the wrong way. The life of Joseph reveals some of the tests you might face.
Joseph endured the test of betrayal…
Then Midianite traders passed by. And they drew Joseph up and lifted him out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. They took Joseph to Egypt(Genesis 37:28).
The test of false accusation…
As soon as his master heard the words that his wife spoke to him, “This is the way your servant treated me,” his anger was kindled. And Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, the place where the king’s prisoners were confined, and he was there in prison (Genesis 39:19, 20).
And the test of being forgotten…
Yet the chief cupbearer did not remember Joseph, but forgot him (Genesis 40:23).
But these tests were designed by God…
When he summoned a famine on the land and broke all supply of bread, he had sent a man ahead of them, Joseph, who was sold as a slave. His feet were hurt with fetters; his neck was put in a collar of iron; until what he had said came to pass, the word of the LORD tested him. The king sent and released him; the ruler of the peoples set him free; he made him lord of his house and ruler of all his possessions, to bind his princes at his pleasure and to teach his elders wisdom (Psalm 105:16-22).
God used those years of slavery and imprisonment to prepare Joseph, but also to show his love to Joseph and reveal his power and goodness day by day, for others saw that God was with Joseph.
Now Joseph had been brought down to Egypt, and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, the captain of the guard, an Egyptian, had bought him from the Ishmaelites who had brought him down there. The LORD was with Joseph, and he became a successful man, and he was in the house of his Egyptian master. His master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD caused all that he did to succeed in his hands…But the LORD was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love and gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison…The keeper of the prison paid no attention to anything that was in Joseph’s charge, because the LORD was with him. And whatever he did, the LORD made it succeed (Genesis 39:1-3, 21, 23 ).
God prepared Joseph through chains for an end that only he could see. Joseph was to lead, but there is great danger in having the authority to lead without the humility to handle it. God used this time to develop Joseph’s character in a way that would not only be valuable to him, but to countless others that would be saved from the famine by his wise leadership.
“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today” (Genesis 50:20).
What “Egyptian prison” do you find yourself in?
Where might God have placed you right now to prepare you for a future that only he sees while at the same time revealing himself to you and those around you in this very moment?
Remember: God is faithful to you in the pit, the prison and the palace.