This week Pastor Gene's wife Heather brings us to the account of Joseph as we look at his time in Egypt and how we should take on his attitude of forgiveness.
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morning so epic you can feel it vibrate when you're standing up here for those of you who don't know me my name is heather i am pastor jean's wife i take care of a lot of the administration here at the church and as many of you have observed in the past when gene is in shorts someone else is up here and if i'm i'm in a collared shirt that's generally my turn some of you may or may not know that in my past life i used to be a history teacher seventh grade that was fun and people asked do you want to go back like do you watch the news no anyway um it used to be fun but generally the first day of school i used to ask the students to raise their hands and tell me which one of them hated history and so you can imagine their fright that's the first day of school i introduced myself mrs simcom your new teacher welcome take you know role in everything and then ask them to tell me that they hate history on the first day of school what a great first impression and so in the reluctance i generally raise my hand first and i let them know i used to hate history and so my goal for you by the end of the school year is to get you to go from hating history to hating it at least a little less because i had the fortunate opportunity of having an instructor change it around for me other than having timelines and memorized dates and all the kind of boring way that i used to learn turned around for me and it really brought it to life and that's the point at which in college i went from maybe i'll be history major and teach history so that was part of my path and so likewise we are going through this story the rest of the story unredacted trying to help you get less intimidated by the bible and again i'm going to raise my hand i started reading the bible from the beginning and be a good christian i'm going to be start writing genesis and i got to one of the genealogies couldn't pronounce 90 of the names got completely lost and then decided to skip to a chapter that i kind of recognized i'm like oh good we're in moses that's exodus but whatever i kind of understand the story so our goal for you is to actually walk you through help bring life to the stories that are in between and make the bible less intimidating so that you feel inspired to pick it up more and understand the stories more than where you're at regardless of where you are in your journey we know some of you are more proficient than others but if you're like me like i was in the beginning i was like yeah i'm just going to go on sunday let the pastor explain it to me and hope he knows how to say the names right i don't know so that's where i used to be today a little further along but nowhere close to gene so that's why he's in charge and i come up here once in a while so we're working our way through genesis we are finishing today i get the fortunate opportunity of 13 chapters of joseph from 37 to 50 as we enter exodus starting next week and gene has explained to you last week we took a sidebar with simeon and levi and the unfortunate tale of revenge over dina if you missed it go back and watch it you can fill in the gaps for yourself and then judah and tamar another wonderful story of judah and his daughter-in-law again read it for yourself or watch last week some interesting details back there as well so today as i said i get to go through the wonderful story of joseph which many of you know he had the many colored robe his ascent to second in command to pharaoh but much like what we're going through i'm going to walk you through the rest of the story so the teacher inside of me cannot help but give you a chart because i'm a visual person and i know gene has probably explained this at nauseam but in order to understand joseph and where he is in his family it's really important to understand the family dynamic of jacob's four wives so his four wives once again they're colorful i dug through the images this is so much easier now being a teacher i can just google what i need so we have leah zilpah rachel and bill hud now i'm not going to call on you because we're live rachel was supposed to be jacob's first wife he gets tricked ends up with leah again fill in the details you can go back and watch gene's message he ends up with leah then zelba his servant rachel and bill hud but his first love is rachel that is who he wanted to marry first he has multiple sons one daughter dina and they're all color-coded for you which is wonderful and joseph in his many colored robe to understand what is so important about this is jacob has joseph and benjamin from his favorite wife rachel they are full brothers the rest of them are half brothers again i can relate to joseph i had half brothers growing up i know not everyone here has had that fortunate multi-dynamic family um upbringing but i can relate to the fact that sometimes half siblings there are favorites there are other dynamics going on in a household when there are different wives and half siblings so we have joseph and benjamin who are the favorites from rachel and on top of that joseph is considered jacob's first born because rachel in his mind would have been his first wife so therefore joseph in his mind is his firstborn son even though he's second to youngest so inevitably his half brothers hate him on top of that any of you have younger siblings joseph is a tattletail he likes to go and tell his dad all the bad things his brothers are doing again i understand that my younger half-sibling decided to tattle on us all the time not fun make matters worse jacob gifts him a multi-colored robe one thing to understand about this time period anything that has died in color is extremely expensive and usually meant for royalty so if you have anything of one color that's insane if you have multi-colored i don't even know how much this would have cost so it's waking up on christmas morning and your brother half brother gets the most extravagant gift and you get like coal and you're stocking in some batteries you're like great that's awesome thanks dad rub it in a little more that you love joseph over all of us again we're going to make matters worse joseph has a dream i'm going to read this to you in genesis 37 one night joseph had a dream and when he told his brothers about it they hated him even more listen to this dream he said we were out in the field tying up bundles of grain suddenly my bundle stood up and your bundles all gathered around and bowed low before me his brothers responded so you think you will be our king to you do you actually think you'll reign over us and they hated him all the more because of his dreams and the way he talked about them soon joseph had another dream and again he told his brothers about it listen i've had another dream he said the sun moon and 11 stars bowed low before me this time he told his dream the dream to his father as well as to his brothers but his father scolded him what kind of dream is that he asked will your mother and i and your brothers actually come and bow to the ground before you but while his brothers were jealous of joseph his father wondered what the dreams meant so his dad scolded him a bit you know don't rub it in you're already the favorite but also trying to wonder why in the world they're going to bow to joseph so we'll find this out by the end of the story so one day joseph's brothers are out they're all shepherds as we know jacob multiplies the sheep so that's the family business and so they're out in the fields taking care of the sheep joseph is to go out and check on them and report back what they're doing so jacob sends him out joseph heads out to check on them goes to shechem finds out they're not there asks an old man hey where'd my brothers go they moved on to dothan so joseph heads out and finds them he is 17 years old at the time this is an important detail joseph's heading their way and of course he's in a multicolored robe so you can't miss joseph coming off in the distance so his brothers are now plotting here comes joseph dad's favorite why don't we just kill him get this bra out of our way and so it seems like when you're reading the details reuben wasn't around when they decided to kill him he comes in hears about the plot and says guys let's not have the blood on our hands let's just throw joseph in a cistern we'll punish him and then that's it we'll just tell dad we'll trick him and say that he's been killed and so they decided to tear his robe off of him throw him in a cistern which is like supposed to hold water luckily it's empty for him there are other stories where it's a lot worse for the person thrown in the cistern and so the brothers leave joseph down in the cistern decide to have dinner they're camping judah steps in and says well instead of just killing him they see ishmaelite traders coming off in the distance why don't we just sell them into slavery that way the blood is not on our hands now if you remember reuben and judah these are key players reuben is going to kind of redeem himself a bit after what happened with bill again you can go back and fill in the blanks and judah as well is going to they're going to be redeeming characters so judah steps in for joseph the first time and instead of just killing him they're going to sell him into slavery for 20 silver pieces reuben apparently isn't around for the detail he comes back and sees that joseph is missing because he planned on taking him back to his dad to kind of like let the brothers get it out of their system and bring him back home and rescue him only to find out that he had been sold into slavery so what they do with the robe they tear it up they kill a goat dip it in blood and send it back to their dad what a horrible gift uh isn't this your son's cloak or robe and so joseph being gone his favorite son is seemingly dead jacob laments he tears his clothes then puts on burlap which i'm not sure is very comfortable and grieves for his favorite son unconsolable over the loss so then if you're reading through we have genesis 38 which takes us to judah and tamar back to 39 joseph is now sold into slavery to potiphar who happens to be the palace guard in charge for pharaoh joseph has god on his side so although these horrible things are happening to him god blesses him and potiphar's house as a result potiphar's house is so plentiful and bountiful potiphar is you know what i'm going to put joseph in charge of everything and now all potiphar has to worry about is basically what to eat really says that like that's all he has to worry about every day kind of nice so joseph takes care of everything overachiever super administrator takes care of everything apparently he is a very good looking man and well built turns out potter far's wife takes a liking to him and tries to proposition him to sleep with her joseph sleep with me and he says um no my master's put me in charge of everything has not held anything from me except for you because you're his wife and i don't want to sin against my god and hope you know ruin my relationship with my master and so he gets away from her the first time tries to stay away from her as much as possible to not be left in a room alone with her because she keeps trying to pine after him unfortunately one day they end up in a room alone together i don't know how that happened because he's trying to avoid her once again he said she says joseph sleep with me sleep with me he says nope runs away she grabs his robe his robe cloak it's depending on the translation the details loses a garment of clothing he has a habit of doing this when he's trying to get out of trouble she holds on to the garment then finally screams brings in the servants and says look what joseph tried to do to me he tried to take advantage of me holds on to the garment waits for her husband to come home potiphar look at what this hebrew slave you brought into my house did to me he tried to take advantage of me so in her insecurity reverses the story claims that joseph tried to take advantage of her potiphar doesn't even ask his side of the story and just throws him in jail awesome sold into slavery now thrown in jail hasn't done anything wrong except for being a tattletale goody too she was an overachiever but not a great end of the story for him so far so god is with him joseph ends up in prison but this is the prison for pharaoh's specific people that he throws in including his cupbearer and baker the warden again seems to learn from the fact that god has blessed joseph puts joseph in charge of everything and doesn't have to worry about anything at all so warden gets to lay back read a book check out netflix while joseph basically does all the work and keeps track of all the inmates so he meets these two gentlemen they're there says for some time again we're not sure exactly how long they both have dreams we know joseph is great with dreams cupbearer has a dream he says do you think you can interpret this joseph says i don't interpret dreams god interprets streams giving god the credit so the cupbearer describes his dream he says i dreamt that there is a branch of vines there are three branches that sprout grapes come out i squeeze the grapes put them into a cup and serve it to pharaoh joseph says hey great in three days time pharaoh is going to restore you to your position and when he does please vouch for me because i've been put here i haven't done anything wrong i've sold into slavery now i'm in prison please vouch for me cupbear goes sure i got your back if your dream interpretation is correct love you man i got your back no worries baker hears a great interpretation he says sure hey joseph can you interpret my dream too unfortunately baker gets not such great news he says my dream is three baskets filled with baked goods the top one with pastries for pharaoh and then birds come and start eating away at the pastries for the pharaoh joseph says well yeah that means three days too you're three baskets but in three days time you're going to get executed by pharaoh and birds are going to peck away at your flesh so not so great of interpretation and what ends up happening is exactly what joseph said three days later pharaoh's birthday comes he pulls cupbearer and baker out of prison restores the cupbearer and executes the baker and the baker has his unfortunate ending and so unfortunately for joseph cupberry kind of forgets about joseph in jail and not just for like a little bit of time two more years goes by and joseph is stuck in prison waiting for cupbearer to come back on his word that is until pharaoh has a dream this is a very dream-filled story so pharaoh has a dream one night goes to sleep sees seven healthy fat cows come up out of the nile and graze on the reeds then seven skinny scrawny starving cows come out and eat the fat cows which is very strange because normally cows don't eat cows they tell you to eat more chicken sorry chick-fil-a is closed today you can go there tomorrow so he wakes up disturbed obviously because cows don't eat cows goes back to sleep and has another dream he dreams that there's a stalk of green seven heads of green that are healthy another one sprouts up with seven scrawny ones eats the fat ones again he wakes up you've got grains eating grains cows eating cows what in the world's going on in my dreams so he calls for all of his magicians and wise men asking for anyone who might be able to interpret his dreams guess who finally remembers what he was supposed to do cupbearer oh yeah pharaoh um sorry forgot to mention this awesome guy i met prison who was there didn't actually do anything wrong interpreted our dreams to a t knew exactly what he was talking about you might want to release him he might know what your dreams mean so joseph is finally released cleaned up because he's been in prison we don't know for how much time they it says that he's shaved and cleaned up and brought to pharaoh pharaoh tells him the dreams again which is very lengthy goes to the whole thing again joseph says i don't interpret dreams god interprets dreams but because you dreamt this twice it is so god has come to you to warn you that there are going to be seven years of prosperity and then seven years of famine and the famine is going to be so horrible that they're going to forget everyone in the land how good the seven years of prosperity was so you guys are going to need to be careful put aside your grain to prepare for the seven years of famine so everyone in egypt doesn't die so pharaoh looks around and says um joseph you're hired because there's no one wiser or smarter than you in the land you get the job of taking care of all the grains when this happens joseph again over cheever gets pulled up to the top pharaoh puts him next in charge no one is more powerful than joseph except for pharaoh gives him his signet ring we've been talking about that so that's the ring that seals the pharaoh's name on everything that he's doing so now joseph goes from slave to prisoner to basically as good as pharaoh minus the tiny title difference he's 30 years old at the time so 13 years have now passed from the time he was sold into slavery he's given a new egyptian name forgive me for trying to pronounce it i don't have joseph here to correct me zephaneth pena best i can do with that and his wife he is given who is a priest's daughter so he gets a pk for a wife asanov and that's where he has two sons manasseh and a frame who are going to be key players later on as we move on so in this bountiful so as predicted we have the seven years of wonderful harvest and one-fifth so 20 so those of you who argue about the 10 or not in this story it's 20 i don't know so 20 of everything is set aside to make sure that they make it through the famine they start storing up their goods guarding it because you need to make sure that it's saved for later they start keeping track and it's so bountiful they lose track of how much food they're even storing that's how bountiful the harvest is for seven years and as predicted exactly after those seven years of harvest happened famine came and it spread across the nation as it was predicted two years into that famine it spread to canaan which is where jacob and joseph's brothers live unfortunately their harvest is going bad as well so jacob says to his sons ten sons hey i hear there's grain in egypt take some money go get a screen so that we don't starve so he sends his ten sons he leaves benjamin behind he's got the sneaky suspicion that something bad might happen to benjamin so he says leave him benjamin behind you guys go you're gonna go grab grain for us so that we don't starve so they pack up their donkeys apparently it's an 11 day journey i like to google a lot to make sure that these details are cool so 11 days they head over to egypt everyone has to go to joseph to get grains and so the brothers come joseph recognizes them they don't recognize him and this is where the interesting detail comes in it's like well how do they not recognize their brother remember he was 17 when they sold him into slavery he was 30 when he was given this position seven years of harvest two years of famine so he's about a 39 year old man instead of a 17 year old boy big difference plus he's an egyptian garb he probably has no hair maybe eyeliner i don't know he's very well dressed and he talked to them through an interpreter so he's very well versed so he recognizes them they don't recognize him and so they come in asking for green that's procedure and he immediately accuses them of being spies he's like oh i'm gonna mess with my brothers so he says guys are spies you're here to figure out what's wrong with us because we're in a famine you're here to check us out and there are no no we're honest shepherds we just came to get green we don't want to starve please we're honest men and then reuben funny enough goes i think this is because what we did to joseph were finally getting punished and joseph hears all this they don't realize it which is hilarious so he ends up throwing them in prison for three days which is great and so he throws him into prison pulls him back out and says okay in order to prove you're not spies you said you had a younger brother and an old father so go back get the younger brother to prove that you're telling the truth and so they're distraught because they know that that's their dad's new favorite is benjamin they're like um okay but they also don't want to die or starve so they are forced to choose someone to hold in prison they don't choose so joseph chooses simeon which is kind of just dessert if you go back and read the other stories so simeon gets stuck behind left in prison the 10 brothers now 9 go back to jacob and tell him the story now mind you joseph keeps playing tricks on them not only does he send him with grain he gives them back all of the coin that they used all their money back in their packs that they bought the grain with so they're heading back they've got the grain they've got the money they're like oh what in the world happened we have all of our money back so they're freaking out but they don't go back right away to give the money back so they go back home to jacob their father tell them the story jacob overly distraught now i've lost another son i've lost joseph now simeon now you want benjamin i'm gonna lose three sons now all because you guys couldn't keep your mouth shut and he was like but he kept asking us questions about her family we didn't know he was gonna use it against us and so reuben steps in first and tells his father look if anything happens to benjamin when we bring him you can kill my first two born sons so he puts his sons up for collateral so you see ruben constantly vouching for jacob or for joseph which is really interesting unfortunately some time goes by mind you simeon stuck in prison this entire time in jail and they run out of their grain finally they go um yeah we kind of need to go back and get more grain or we're going to starve but we can't go back unless we bring benjamin so jacob finally has to agree to let benjamin go back judah finally steps in again another redeeming qualities especially if you go back to his other story and says father i promise nothing will happen to benjamin you have me as collateral i will be in debt to you you can put this on me for the rest of my life if anything bad happens to benjamin soon i have reuben giving his first two born sons and judah backing up his word to bring benjamin because you have starvation or these other issues going on so finally they bring benjamin back the brothers head back to egypt and the funny thing about this timeline is that joda says they could have been there and back at least two times so about a month and a half has gone by in this whole transaction finally the brothers pack up bring benjamin now jacob wants to make sure he gets benjamin back and sends back not only the money from the first round of payment but also another round plus he sends in pistachio almonds and pistachios because pistachio almonds aren't a nut sorry that would be interesting hybrid so he sends both of them with him with other spices and different things to kind of sweeten the pot make sure that whoever the manager is of egypt sends his beloved youngest son back here if we give him all these nice things as an offering perhaps he'll make sure to give us our son back what's an interesting thing about jacob is how often he's willing to give up all of his goods knowing that god's going to restore them so just an interesting point and how important family is to him so he sends benjamin the brothers they come joseph sees his brothers sees benjamin for the first time now and what is this 22 years he has to excuse himself goes and cries weeps probably has to fix his eyeliner splashes water in his face comes back out sees his brothers and invites them in for lunch they're like um okay is he gonna pull us into slavery what's going on they you know they're terrified like here's your money back we don't know why it was put there he's like oh god must have restored it to you right they magically put the coins back in your bag so they're freaking out because it's just all these weird things keep happening they give them water to wash their feet and have lunch now egyptians and hebrews don't eat together they despise one another egyptians despise hebrews and so they he puts them at their own table let's simian out of jail finally but he messes with them more and puts them in age order oldest to youngest and so they're sitting at the table going um this is really weird so joseph is at his table eating his goods gives benjamin five times as much food as his brothers so of course great now joseph's the favorite now benjamin indirectly gets all this great food and so he finishes the deal sends them home and uh is supposed to leave benjamin but he lets them all go initially puts the grain and tells the manager put as much green into their bags as you can plus give them back all of their goods but i want you to put my cup in benjamin's sack this is managers of course do what they are told the brothers start leaving before they're out of the city joseph sends the soldiers after them and the brothers are like what now someone's stolen our master's cup that he uses to use for his divine prop prophesying well we didn't steal anything we're honest men again we've already proven that we brought back our youngest brother whoever stole it go ahead and kill him or put it into slavery that sounds like a fair deal turns out it's benjamin they all go back to joseph judah steps in and pleads my father is distraught if you take benjamin from us he's surely going to die he goes through the whole story everything propositions like i've already put myself in front of him take me instead puts himself in place of benjamin please joseph can't take it anymore and says brothers it's me joseph sorry i messed with you this entire time but it's me benjamin is the one that recognizes him first and so they reunite he says no no this is our long lost brother which is amazing and so joseph is so happy from this reunion news spreads everywhere to his to pharaoh to all the guards that he's now been reunited with his brothers now the brothers realizing that this is joseph goes we're so sorry we sold you into slavery can you ever forgive us joseph goes who am i god of course i'll forgive you i wouldn't be where i am saving all of egypt and my family you if i hadn't been sold into slavery and you hadn't done what you did so i forgive you amazing and that you have to imagine like joseph is basically pharaoh can do whatever he wants to his brothers and that's the most he does to mess with them i don't know that i would have been trusted to do that if i had that much power if that had been done to me so just saying he's a little bit better on the scale but anyway we're all human so he finally tells his brothers i'll give you the best land pharaoh allows them to live in with one of the best lands tells them to go back i'm going to give you goshen now on the map where goshen is is at the top of the river nile which is the most fertile land because now they have nowhere to have their their their sheep and all of their livestock have anywhere safe to eat because of the famine so joseph sets them up pharaoh agrees and he says go back don't even worry about packing anything i've got you so he sends them back with all the donkeys and everything that they need to pack their goods he sends back all of his brothers with a change of clothes but again puts favoritism on benjamin gives him five changes of clothes and 300 pieces of silver to go back with and so they all end up traveling back with all of their goods back to jacob tell them your son is alive joseph so now joseph has is alive jacob has not lost any of his sons benjamin was a sword all of these people and so he packs everyone up and this is where we get to another wonderful genealogy they go through all the sons and daughters of all of the tribes of israel and that's 66 people so i'm gonna save you that this morning i'm not gonna even try and butcher those names so in all it's 70 people in the family who have to travel back now to goshen joseph ends up meeting them there which is amazing so he finally reunites with his father jacob who is 130 years old at the time so he meets them and brings five of his brothers and his father jacob to go meet pharaoh and so pharaoh realizing that they're shepherds he tells them tell them your shepherds because again egyptians hate shepherds and hebrews so that way they can stay in goshen which is just outside of egypt and the best land pharaoh agrees and jacob blesses pharaoh two times in meeting him and pharaoh puts them in charge of all their livestock because jacob's a wonderful track record and taking care of livestock they're now going to take care of pharaoh's livestock so now jacob is set up he lives for another 17 years just before he passes away joseph says meet my two sons manasseh in a frame i want you to bless them and so he's getting old his eyesight is weak and so joseph knows this and puts his son strategically in front of jacob puts manasseh on the right side a frame on the left side because it frames the younger one now when we were married i switched my arms around so when i was telling the story i remember which one was my right hand so manasses on his right hand jacob intentionally switches his arms and switches the blessing between a frame and manasseh and joseph goes dad what are you doing you're switching the blessings manasseh is my oldest son why are you blessing him when frame is the youngest no no i did that intentionally although they will both have great nations a frame will have stronger and better nations and lineage than that of manasseh so he did it intentionally which continues the theme of the youngest sons getting better blessings and getting favoritism over the older so we see this constantly throughout genesis and so we move through gene mentioned to you before he is on his deathbed gives blessings and curses to his various sons you have that prophecy of judah and the lineage of jesus from judah which is an amazing scripture i encourage you to go back and read that and then he passes away at the ripe old age of 147 not as old as his forefathers but pretty old and so before he passes away he tells joseph please send me back to the cave that abram bought put me in the cave of my my ancestors that is the cave that abram bought for sarai remember he went back and forth insisted on paying full price for it so that's where isaac is abram is buried and so they put together his body prepare for burial and have a whole procession that even egyptians attend because of jacob and what he has done so they bring him there bury him at 147 years old which is amazing and so joseph continues to live to about 110 years old but not before again he saves all of egypt from famine pharaoh gets the better under the deal so he puts joseph in charge during the famine not only do the people have to sell all of their riches they give all their money over for buying grains they run out of money and so they sell their livestock they're like okay we've run out of money so joseph says fine give me your livestock so they give their livestock they run out of grain again well give me your land okay so then they sell their land they're running out of land well then sell yourselves okay so by the end of the famine pharaoh not only owns all of the riches all of the land all of the livestock but all of the people after all of this all through joseph's over administration and getting them through the famine so it ended up being very prosperous for pharaoh putting joseph in charge and one final note to be very aware of is at the end after jacob dies the brothers are now really afraid great dad's not going to intercede for us to joseph now he's really going to take his revenge out on us and so we're going to tell him that dad told him that he needs to forgive us so that he doesn't take it out on us again and so joseph says fine i again i forgive you who am i god not to forgive you i'm not i'm not going to punish you only god punishes so he forgives his brothers once again and says i will provide for you and your families and so all of the people are going to be great and what's also wonderful in this story because i'm running out of time there are two prophecies again of what's going to happen in exodus of people being the israelites being brought up being a great people god promises not only in a dream to jacob but also to joseph i will lead your people back out and so that's going to set us up for exodus and moses those dreams of god reassuring them that although they're going to egypt don't worry about it i've got you i'm going to bring you back and so all that happens including the redemption and forgiveness of joseph's brothers and so that gets me to what amazing point of the story that this is that regardless of what joseph went through he was sold into slavery put into prison gets actually super administrator top person next to pharaoh saves his family and forgives his brothers for what they've done for him to him and the hatred they had against him so for me what it reminds me of is that no matter what i've gone through in my life because i've gone through and looked at why in the world was i in a cinderella story why in the world did i go through this because god turns your mess into your message and that was the one thing joseph kept telling his brothers that god had me here he had you do what you did so that i could do what i'm doing now saving not only the people of egypt but all of my people and if you hadn't done that i wouldn't be here and so when i look at my life or other people's lives and all of the horrible things that you think that you're going through and you're like why god why he has a different plan for you at the end of the story you may not be able to see yet i can look back and literally some those of you who i mentor are going to laugh i can literally when i'm talking to certain women that i work with they'll tell me what they're going through and i think oh my gosh i can't believe i went through the same exact thing so that i could walk you through this part of your life so i can't believe i had to go through such a horrible situation to help you get through yours and so i get to be a blessing because of the things that happened to me in my life to be able to bless others which is amazing and that's what we get to do in christianity is take our messes and turn them into our messages and as far as forgiveness joseph makes it very clear who am i god not to forgive so again when it comes to forgiveness not only for other people if god can forgive us of all the horrible things that we've done i've done in my past who knows he can forgive me who am i not to forgive anyone else in my life i'm not god only god can punish people it's not my job to inflict revenge he's got it he knows their story he knows their ending my job is to forgive them and show them the light of christ and be that forgiveness and freeing myself including forgiving myself for the things that i've done because one part of my story that most of you know or do not know is that i'm in recovery and i never thought that my mess that was alcoholism would be my message of blessing and recovery that i had the wonderful timing that my seven year anniversary was friday before my message today and part of that is forgiving others and forgiving myself for all the things that i've done when i was in my addiction and so the story of joseph again that's all god is pulling that all together in the timing and reminding me most importantly me to forgive myself and to forgive others for the journey like i said a cinderella story i've been through a lot not as bad as others but i look back and reviewing joseph remember man if those things hadn't happened i wouldn't be standing here today sober seven years working with the people that i'm working with and being able to share my message from my mess and so i encourage all of you wherever you are in your mess if you're still going through it let it be your message someday and if you have a message please share it you might not have to do it on the stage but please share it with each other and let god take the credit for it because without him we're nothing so remember i love you we love you as a church and most importantly he loves you thank you