“Yet did not the chief butler remember Joseph, but forgat him.And it came to pass at the end of two full years, that Pharaoh dreamed: and, behold, he stood by the river.”
god's timing may be different published week of February 28, 2021
As we take a snapshot of Joseph's life at this point in Bible history, he seems to be experiencing one broken promise after another broken promise. Here in our text, we see that his hopes are once again dashed. Think about it: Joseph had been left for dead by his family, sold into slavery and brought to Egypt, along with being falsely imprisoned. As Joseph “dog paddles” through the tests life seems to be serving him, I would imagine he is weary and ready for a break. Why all the trials, betrayals and disappointments?
However, it may appear that we are about to see a turn in the road of Joseph's life as we read the first five words (“And it came to pass”) of Genesis chapter 41. These words speak volumes. Joseph had been interpreting dreams while in prison, God had granted him favor with the prison officials and things finally seemed to be going his way. He interpreted a dream for Pharaoh’s cupbearer, who in turn promised to remember him when he was released from prison and would also appeal to Pharaoh on Joseph’s behalf. But Genesis 40:23 shows that once again Joseph was forgotten by those closest to him.
The next seven words detailing Joseph’s saga are downright horrifying, “at the end of two full years …” Two years! You mean to tell me that Joseph sat in prison for a crime he didn’t commit for two more years? It seems not only had the cupbearer forgotten about him but how about God . . . had He forgotten Joseph? Although on the surface, it may appear that God had forgotten or forsaken Him, that was far from the case. God was in complete control of Joseph's situation and He was well aware of what was going on. I am sure that was hard for Joseph to remember as he sat in prison for 730 more days.
Certainly, it is hard for us to remember when God doesn’t work according to our timetable, isn’t it? We live in a culture of instant gratification. Everything is quicker and easier than ever before. We want what we want, when we want it; and most of the time, we can get it. But God is not a drive-through window. We cannot pull up, place an order, and see immediate results.
We must remember that God’s timing is perfect. It was perfect for Joseph during those two long years, and it is perfect in every situation we face. When man forgets . . . God remembers. When days turn into months and even years, He is faithful. Every day His mercies are new. And no matter how hopeless a circumstance may seem; God is never early and He is never late.
“Father, please help me to trust Your timing. Lord, give me Your strength to wait upon you in each and every circumstance of life. Strengthen my life through and in the struggles that You allow to come my way today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”