Through the Word in 2020 / Jan. 25

We are reading the Bible through together this year, using the Discipleship Journal Reading Plan published by the Navigators. You can download it free of charge from:
Today’s 4 readings are: Matthew 10:1-20; Acts 15:1-21; Psalm 23, Genesis 50. 
If you are looking at the plan carefully, you will note that this is our last reading for January – giving us a number of “catch up” days if we have fallen behind. So our next installment will pick up Feb. 1. 
But for today, I would like us to briefly consider Gen. 50:15-21.
I am struck by two things. 1. The way my heart can mirror that of Joseph’s brothers when circumstances in my life make me uncertain of the future. 
Now that their Father was dead, they feared Joseph’s goodwill toward them had been motivated only by Joseph holding back because of his Father, and not genuinely Joseph’s heart. And when I sin or fail, or for whatever reason I grow uncertain or unsteady, it is easy for me to think that the Heavenly Father’s love for me is only based upon my performance. That if I mess it up, He will turn and His goodwill toward me will end. That it is not His nature, heart and promises that I actually depend upon but my own ability to obey perfectly. And it is a false accusation against His love. It suspects Him. It makes Him out to be less than He is in His mercy, grace, lovingkindness, forgiveness and love.
2. I am struck at how their distrust of Joseph’s love toward them wounded him. When they spoke to him with their sham message from their Father – he wept. And I wonder how often we wound the heart of our Savior, and the Father who loved us so that He sent His only Son to die on the Cross for OUR sins, when we doubt His steadfast love, faithfulness, care, concern, tenderness, patience and forgiveness. We treat Him as though He had no idea how we would sin later after He saved us, and that His love toward us is so fragile, that the sins Jesus died for, can in any way nullify His finished work. 
God loves nothing more from His children that to be believed, trusted. That we take Him at His word. Look at His track record and trust Him with our sin. All of it. And that when He testifies of Himself that He IS love – that it is a love which our finite failings have no ability to negate. 
Trust Him, beloved. Trust His love.      

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