My daily commute averages about 45 minutes or so into downtown Atlanta. Some people may complain about a drive like that, but I actually don’t mind. I typically spend that time listening to my favorite Christian apologetics podcasts, or listening to the Bible. Over the past couple of days, I have been listening to the latter chapters of Genesis, and the story of how Joseph was sold into slavery by his own brothers, but through that act, God was able to preserve the line of Abraham and the beginnings of the nation of Israel.
After Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery, through a very interesting series of events he ended up being ruler over all of Egypt second only to Pharaoh himself. Joseph’s personal success allowed him to save hundreds of thousands of lives, including the lives of his father, brothers, and their extended family. In the final chapter of Genesis, Joseph’s brothers approach him, begging for forgiveness for their evil act of selling him into slavery decades before. Joseph responds by saying, “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, ESV).
I often reflect on my own life, and look back on all the dumb, stupid mistakes I have made. I also see situations where others wronged me. But despite all that, I can still see God’s handiwork in my life. I have said many times that I feel so completely blessed by God because I know that without His intervention, I would not be where I am today. Despite all the “mess” that I have had to endure, I wouldn’t change a thing!
I have a wonderful wife who is the love of my life. My oldest son is teaching English in Prague; my oldest daughter recently graduated college and is starting a career as a teacher; my middle son, despite some serious challenges over the past few years, has really started to turn his life around; and my youngest daughter is growing into a wonderful young lady, with a heart for God, and about to start her senior year in high school. I couldn’t be more proud of my family. But none of this is really my doing. Just like Joseph, I can clearly see God’s hand in my life. Actions that others mean for evil, God has turned into good.
In his second letter to the church at Corinth, the Apostle Paul reminds followers of Christ how we should approach the trials and troubles in this life. He writes, “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18).
While some may look at the work of God in my life (or others’ lives) and call it “chance” or “coincidence”, I don’t see it that way. There are just too many complex, interconnected events that have lead me to where I am today for me to chalk it up to so-called “chance.” This, to me, is one of the greatest “proofs” for the existence of God.