Scripture: Genesis 41
Corn is one of the most amazing crops we have. Corn can be used to make all sorts of useful products: shaving cream, paper products, rugs, paint, glue, aspirin, toothpaste, cleaning products, and of course… all kinds of food.
Corn served another purpose back in the book of Genesis: It saved an entire nation!
You see, the ruler of Egypt, Pharaoh, had a dream. Two dreams, in fact. In one dream, he saw seven skinny cows devour seven fat cows. He then saw seven shrunken, shriveled ears of corn devour seven fat, delicious ears of corn. These dreams troubled Pharaoh, and he did not know what they meant!
When Pharaoh’s butler heard about the dream, he told him about a prisoner he had met when Pharaoh had thrown the butler in jail. The prisoner’s name was Joseph, and he was from the land of Canaan. Joseph had interpreted a dream for the butler, and the butler believed he could also interpret the Pharaoh’s dream.
Joseph was brought before Pharaoh, and sure enough, Joseph interpreted the dream. There would be seven years of good harvests, followed by seven years of severe famine. Pharaoh was so impressed with Joseph that he made him his second-in-command and put Joseph in charge of storing food for the famine. By the time the famine struck, Joseph had stored enough food to get the entire nation of Egypt through the famine!
But Egypt is not the nation I was talking about at the beginning of the story! You see, Joseph was the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, whom God had promised to make a mighty nation. Joseph was one of 11 sons of Jacob, and in case you’re wondering how he came to be in jail in Egypt, I’ll tell you: His brothers had sold him into slavery!
Joseph was the favourite son. His father loved him more than all the rest and made no secret of his favouritism. Not only that, but Joseph also had several dreams that one day his brothers would bow down before him. You can almost understand why his brothers hated him so much, can’t you?
But then, one day, Joseph’s brothers did bow down before Joseph. The famine hurt them too, and their father sent them to beg for food. Joseph could have refused. He could have put them in prison or worse without even giving them a trial. He was, after all, the second most powerful man in Egypt! But Joseph knew that God had allowed everything to happen so that Joseph could save his family – a family that would become the nation of Israel.
It’s not always easy to love others, especially when they do you wrong. But God puts people in our lives for a reason, the same way he put Joseph in his brothers’ lives. Be thankful. Love others, and always be willing to forgive them.