22 Joseph stayed in Egypt, along with all his father’s family. He lived a hundred and ten years 23 and saw the third generation of Ephraim’s children. Also the children of Makir son of Manasseh were placed at birth on Joseph’s knees. 24 Then Joseph said to his brothers, “I am about to die. But God will surely come to your aid and take you up out of this land to the land he promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” 25 And Joseph made the Israelites swear an oath and said, “God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up from this place.” 26 So Joseph died at the age of a hundred and ten. And after they embalmed him, he was placed in a coffin in Egypt.
What a beautiful ending to Joseph’s story. After all the hardship he experienced early on – separated from his family, wrongly accused of rape, being forgotten in prison – he experienced the joy of being reunited with his family, his character being redeemed and being elevated to high standing in pharaoh’s court.
What fascinates me is that even though he experienced many years of prosperity in Egypt, Joseph did not lose his sense of God’s story. It may have appeared that Joseph had ‘made it’ in life – wealth, status and power, as well as his family… but he knew that this was a stop on the way, that God was going to take His people into the promised land, and Joseph did not want to be left behind. He wasn’t going to be able to see it with his own eyes, but his bones were to go with them. I just love that sense from Joseph of – I am still going to be a part of this!
God, I want to be like Joseph, highly aware of the big story you are telling and my part within it. I want to live with the kind of faith and conviction Joseph did, that you God are going to fulfill every one of your promises. Help me to be like Joseph, trusting you in the big and the small, and prepared to journey through the tough and the rewarding seasons with you. Amen.
Written by Ps. Bethany Waugh