BUT HE ENDURED
M.Anthony David Swaroop Kumar
Of all his brothers, though he was younger and not so brawny, he was, Dad’s favorite. He had visions of what the future could be for him and his family. He saw prophetic and mind-blowing visions. His family laughed when he shared those visions with them. No one took him seriously.
But he endured all of it patiently.
All his elder brothers hated him. They thought that, being Dad’s blue-eyed boy, he must have been telling tales on them. Their hatred peaked when they saw the beautiful new coat of many colors, which his dad bought only for him.
He patiently endured their hatred.
One day as they were far away from home grazing their father’s flocks, they got a chance. Father sent his favorite son to them. They seized him and tore his multicolored coat from off his slender shoulders. They conspired to tell a lie to their dad and threw him into an unused well. They got a bright idea when they saw some traveling slave traders and sold him off to them for a pittance.
Still, the young man endured it all.
On their journey, the traders reached the kingdom of Egypt along with their slave. There they sold him as a slave to Potiphar, Captain of the King Pharaoh’s guard.
He endured being a slave in that new environment.
But God was with him. And he was such a faithful slave that Potiphar trusted him with everything in his home. He became chief of all of Potiphar’s slaves. But then a problem arose. Mrs.Potiphar lusted after this youthful slave and tried to seduce him. He refused. She turned tables on him and complained that he tried to seduce her. Her husband threw him into the Pharaoh’s prison. There he languished for some years. Wrongfully confined for no fault of his. With no hope of a fair trial or release. In all these tribulations, did he relent?
No rather, he endured patiently.
But God continued to be with this young man of endurance. So, he became the trusted helper of the prison warder. He was asked look after the welfare of all the other prisoners. A job he did with great endurance. One of them, the King’s cupbearer was reinstated to his position after a dream interpreted correctly by this young man. Before he left the prison, this young man asked him to put forward his case to the Pharaoh. But this cupbearer forgot completely about him, for nearly a couple of years.
But he endured, still patient, still without any grudge!
Then, in the fullness of God’s time, this enduring young man Joseph was elevated to the second highest position in all of Egypt. Due to the worldwide famine and due to his prophetic ability, he made Egypt the source of food for all nations during the famine. He had power both over his brothers and over his parents and his brothers. But he never took his revenge on his scheming brothers. He forgave them heartily and tried to help them.
He continued to endure.
His endurance was beyond his grave. Even before his death, he gave command that his bones were to be taken to the promised land of Canaan, when they all shifted back. Something, which was fulfilled by his descendents, some 400 years later.
A prophetic endurance indeed!
Joseph was a young man with a lot of patience, a lot of endurance. A faithful, foresighted, forgiving and fruitful man indeed. An embodiment as it were of endurance! May we all in this day and age endure our little hardships with a smile and grow in the favour of Our Lord!
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© 2004: Dr.M.A.David S Kumar