When all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread. Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph. What he says to you, do.” Genesis 41:55
Who better to turn to than a Pharaoh for help? People in high positions should have had all the answers and the keys to all the storehouses. Yet, Pharaoh was in over his head. He was not God’s child and his stone gods weren’t talking.
Seemingly overnight, Joseph was brought out of obscurity to a place of prominence. He couldn’t have guessed that he would sleep in a palace instead of a prison floor, or that his administrative and prophetic gifts would be implemented for the salvation of his people. Yet, when God decided it was time for his advancement, nothing and no one could stop it. Who did the famished people turn to? To the one whose name they didn’t even know the day before.
How many righteous are sitting in low places today? They are gifted, overlooked, even ridiculed. They have turned down opportunities for advancement because the pathway to the top meant compromise. The sacrifice, made out of love for God, has cost them dearly. There will come a time that others will turn to them for life-saving advice. Their quiet lives of steadfast faithfulness to God will speak volumes when those they formerly trusted shrivel in the flames of adversity. It is only suffering that exposes the difference between the two. It is only suffering that reveals the golden qualities of the ones they once despised.
I must not weary of the quiet and steady journey of the true disciple. Drawing near to God is never the popular agenda. I will stand out like a sore thumb and bear the insults of those who have much more interesting lives. Yet, when famine affects the landscape of those around me, it might just be the hour for which God has prepared me. I may not sleep in a palace but I will be sought after for the treasures I’ve cultivated in secret with my God.
John the Baptist, a peculiar recluse, lived three decades for a future, though short, time of influence. Most of his life was preparation for the short burst of glory when he was privileged to prepare others for the arrival of Jesus. Such is the way of discipleship. You and I must never assume that obscurity will be our ‘normal’. Ever ready, we are looking for the time when the seeds God has sown into our hearts in private will be poured out in others time of need.
I never fit in the mainstream. You made me unique and I know that my time with You will bring a beautiful harvest. Amen