Unchartered Territory

I got two Bibles for Christmas. Not really sure what that is supposed to mean. But I've been reading the one because not only is it a read-the-bible-in-a-year Bible, it is also in chronological order (according to some historians). So as I have returned to Gordon College for my final semester of undergraduate education, I've been reading the stories of Joseph and Job.

I'm not sure if you know the stories of Joseph and Job, but I'm finding them very relatable at this time of my life. Joseph is the beloved son of his father, but a source of jealousy for his brothers. Even though God gives him visions and dreams of his future success and leadership, he quickly finds himself sold into slavery by his very brothers. Even in Egypt as a slave he faces even more injustice, and is thrown into jail for doing what is right. There he stays for several years, but he never loses faith in God, and remains hopeful. Soon after the dreams come true, and he is released from prison and put in charge of all of Egypt, second only to Pharaoh himself. I'm leaving out a lot of awesome details but it is an incredibly inspiring story.

Then Job. The man who is faithful to God, even when his faith is tested with disaster after disaster. His livelihood and wealth is stolen and destroyed, his family is killed by a powerful wind collapsing their house, and Job reacts by continuing to praise God.

So, I've never been sold into slavery. I've never been thrown into jail, nor lost all my possessions and family in a single day. God willing none of that happens. But these stories give me hope because I similarly look at the future and know that God has promised good for me, but don't see it yet. That is the definition of faith- believing despite not seeing. From what I've heard, sometimes those years of transition after college can be very difficult. I might not like the job I work in, I might not find a job, it might be very lonely or intimidating. But it is those years of trial that forged Joseph and Job into truly righteous godly leaders. Bravery and confidence can not come without traveling through the unchartered territory.

The last time I was this nervous about my future was the first few months of my freshmen year. And in that time I wrote a prayer based on the story of Joseph. So for those other seniors graduating or those simply needing encouragement about their uncertain futures, I leave you with a few lines from that prayer:

My future is unsure. But always in your hands. Help me to trust you once again. You provided Christ in a seemingly unfixable scenario. Because of your great love I believe nothing is impossible for you....
Remind me of my humility as you restore me with your mercy.


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