R.T. Kendall writes, “For Joseph, vindication on the spot might have done something for him in that moment; but it wouldn’t have done anything for the kingdom of God. When we are mistreated in any way, we must realize that our suffering has profound and vast implications for the greater kingdom of God. There are unseen reasons for continued suffering. Who knows what God will do with your life if you take mistreatment with dignity?”
I had a recent experience with angry vitriol being spewed in my direction from someone that didn’t agree with my position on a particular subject. It triggered something in me that wanted to “fight” back with words that I knew I would regret. Thankfully, I responded more appropriately although it didn’t seem to matter. I’m ok with that. Proverbs tells us why. ….. “death and life are in the power of the tongue”. I’d rather bring life.
Joseph’s decision to forgo revenge still blows me away – although, I often question the prudence of telling his brothers of his dream. Maybe youth played a part in that. Still no revenge, only love shown to a hurting family. Once he gathered the crew together he took care of them, though his methods in doing so were unconventional.
Much suffering is ahead of us. The Bible tells us the truth of what’s to come. How will you handle mistreatment in the face of injustice? With dignity or with hatred? As believers, we’re called to bring unity – not division. I could fight with a long-time friend about my views that are very different from his OR I could love him and respect him knowing being “right” is irrelevant. For either of us. Only God knows the absolute truth.
Take mistreatment with dignity. You won’t regret it.
And that’s the memo,