Whatever it is you’ve gone through, whatever has wounded you, caused you pain, or caused you to question, you have to know God has a plan of total and complete redemption for you.

However, you’ve got to walk through it. You can’t choose to stay stuck in what happened. You can’t dwell in what they did to you. You can’t continue to replay what they said about you. God will redeem it if you walk through it with him.

Look at the story of Joseph. When he was just 17 years old, his brothers hated him so much that they sold him into slavery, then told their father that he had been killed and eaten by wild beasts. So here Joseph is, a slave, betrayed by his own family. That sucks! That’s a rough life. Imagine the stories he told himself. Imagine the replay of that betrayal. His brothers had caused him tremendous pain and wrecked his whole life.

BUT GOD.

Let me tell you, it doesn’t matter what someone else has done to you, God can redeem it. God’s plan for every ounce of hurt and disappointment in your life has always been redemption, however you must choose to walk through this with God and not stay stuck in it.

Joseph ends up a slave in Egypt. For 11 years he is away from his family, treated as a slave, then thrown into prison for a crime he didn’t commit. But Joseph WALKED THROUGH IT WITH GOD. He didn’t lose his faith. He sought God for divine guidance and he saw him working in the details, yes, even in prison. He had not become bitter, in fact, scripture says God blessed him. Every master he worked for received blessings because of the overflow of Joseph’s blessings from God. Every prison he was held in was filled with God’s presence because of the overflow of God’s presence in Joseph.

Eventually, Joseph gets out of prison and ends up in Pharaoh’s house to interpret his dreams. Because Pharaoh saw the spirit of God within Joseph, he puts him in charge of everything and everyone in Egypt.

After all Joseph had gone through for all these years, after the evil that was intentionally done to him by his own family, after all the people who had used him and left him, Joseph had not grown bitter. He had not grown pitiful. He was not a victim. He walked in the power of God. Others saw the Spirit of God within him … that’s a healed person!

This is precisely what God wants to do with your wounds, your pain, your questions. He wants to heal you so completely that your redemption absolutely reeks of the Spirit of God. Why? Because only God could get you through that and bring you out on the other side whole. Only God could heal that brokenness someone else caused. Only God could redeem that pain into a greater purpose.

Now, with Joseph in charge of all of Egypt, he was divinely directed in the revelation of what was to come. God had shown him there would be 7 years of tremendous abundance followed by 7 years of extreme famine.

By this time, Joseph is 30 years old and he is managing an entire country to save them from starving. For 7 years he stored the extra food in their time of abundance to prepare for the famine that would follow. Then, just as God’s spirit had prompted him, the famine hit. The land was ravished. There was no food anywhere except for what had been stored.

Why is all of this important? Because a full circle moment is about to happen.

You see, Joseph’s brothers were back home and they were starving. They had no food in the famine. So their father sent them to Egypt to beg for food from the supply that had been stored. Who was in charge of the store house? Their long lost brother, Joseph. The one they had betrayed. The one they had intended to kill in jealousy, then ended up selling into slavery. The one they had told their father the wild beasts had killed. The one they had fake cried over while they did their evil work against him. The one they thought must have been long gone by this time.

The brothers show up begging for food, never guessing it was long lost Joseph now leading Egypt. Imagine their surprise when Joseph says to them in Genesis 45:4-7, “Come close to me.” When they had done so, he said, “I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will be no plowing and reaping. But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance.”

This is a healed man. This is God’s redemption.

These were the brothers that had caused him such harm. By this time, Joseph is believed to be 39 years old. Do the math … 22 years of his life he had spent as a slave and then in prison, treated unjustly, forgotten about, without his family, and it was because of his brothers. His brothers who he now has the power to save. His brothers who he has now forgiven and he’s even telling them not to be stressed or angry at themselves for what they had done to him. Why? Because God had used it all for good. God had redeemed the evil. God had redeemed the pain. God had redeemed the hurt.

And when God redeems, it’s more than just your life changed … it’s the lives of many!

Verse 15, “And he kissed all his brothers and wept over them.”

Only God can do that. Only God can cause a broken heart to forgive on that level. Only God can possibly take something so bad and use it for something good. Now, Joseph is saving their lives, but not only their lives, he’s saving the lives of an entire country!

What if Joseph would have grown bitter in the 11 years of slavery and prison time? What if Joseph would have stayed broken in the 22 years he was betrayed by his family? Here’s what would have happened … he would have missed God’s plan of redemption for the rest of his life.

So the abuse lasted for 8 years. What about the rest of your life? So that horrible marriage was for 15 years. What about the rest of your life? You’ve hurt over this long enough. It’s taken enough of your life. Declare it won’t take another day! You won’t stay stuck here, you’re walking right through this with God to redemption.

My sister, don’t miss God’s plan of redemption. Be willing to walk through this with God and refuse to get stuck in what happened to you or what didn’t happen for you. God’s plan is not for you to get stuck in that. God’s plan is to heal you through it as you walk with him. This is recovery. And let me tell you something, recovery is hard work.

I’ve been listening to a podcast with Lisa Harper interviewing Christine Caine. Christine is a woman who came from 12 years of neglect, abandonment, and extreme abuse as a child. Today, Christine is one of the most profound speakers you will ever hear, impacting lives around the world with the saving message of Jesus. Christine shares her story about the hard work of recovery. And that work is our work.

If you have a physical injury and you have surgery, you are not completely healed. Physical therapy is often required. And that therapy is hard work. That therapy is sometimes more painful than the original injury itself. And that therapy is totally up to you. You don’t have to do it. But if you don’t, you sacrifice your ability to fully function in wholeness in the future. That’s up to you.

With therapy, you recover.

This is the picture of God’s redemptive work. You must choose it. You must choose to walk through the hardest of things with God to recover. For your heart to be healed from what happened, you have to walk through all that pain, all that mess, all that hurt with Jesus and recover.

And if you do … then you walk in the reality of what Joseph said to his brothers in Genesis 50:19-21, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.”

Oh how God redeemed every ounce of harm that was ever intended toward Joseph. God redeemed the 22 years he was separated from his family because of their jealousy and desire to get rid of him. It was only possible because during those 22 years, Joseph walked with God in recovery. He was healed. His heart was healed. His mind was healed. The painful memories were evicted and replaced with promises of God.

Will you walk with God and let him lead you to redemption? Will you seek him for your recovery and let him make you whole again? Will you let what Jesus did for you always be bigger than what anyone else did to you? Bigger than what you did to yourself.

As long as what someone else did, what someone else said, what you did in your past, or what disappointing thing never happened for you, holds a place in your heart and mind that is bigger than what Jesus did for you, you will continue to hurt. As long as that is bigger than what Jesus did for you, you will be overwhelmed with the wounds and triggered by the memories. But when what Jesus did for you becomes bigger, healing begins. You walk with him through this and you live in redemption.

That’s when everything changes for you. Let Jesus be bigger than everything else. He is. Put him in his rightful place!

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