"His brothers pulling out the sack of coins reminded him of that moment they sold him for a few coins 20 years ago! He knew right then he had no choice but to face his past."
I’ve always thought that the saddest story in the Bible is the story of Joseph. I look at it as the saddest story because a child is neglected and a brother is abused and abandoned. The people who were supposed to protect him and love him were the same people who hurt him. Being hurt by family didn’t seem to be enough for Joseph, so then he was thrown into a pit and sold to another country.
Let’s think about the life of a victim and survivor.
As a child, so many of us were abused physically, sexually or verbally. During the childhood, the mind is still developing, and as my father often states, “Children learn what they live.” So maybe you were a victim of abuse as a child, and as you got older, your mind may have held on to that abuse, subconsciously. No matter how hard you may try to ignore it, some way and some how, your past will follow. Before I get ahead of myself, let me go back to the story of Joseph.
Joseph basically continued life by suppressing everything that occurred to him back at home while he worked in Egypt. I think it’s safe to say he worked to keep his mind off home. It was his way of coping. We have all chosen various coping mechanisms to avoid facing our past. Some turned to workaholics-meaning they always have to stay busy. That was one of my coping mechanisms. I never wanted to make anytime for anything else but some type of work. Some may have turned to alcohol or drugs (both legal and illegal). Some developed eating disorders, mental or emotional disorders. So, Joseph suppressed his horrible memories and continued to excel at every job he was given. He was favored and blessed abundantly.
Twenty years later, Joseph was forced to face his past. (Just like me!) His brothers came to him to purchase some grain due to the famine. Not only was Joseph reminded of his past, but he also suffered from a trigger moment (a recall of a traumatic memory). Let me tell you about trigger moments. They are no fun! Sometimes certain smells, words, visuals, food, or candy will trigger that traumatic memory. It could be anything! With Joseph, it was the coins. His brothers pulling out the sack of coins reminded him of that moment they sold him for a few coins 20 years ago! He knew right then he had no choice but to face his past. Joseph faced his brothers and his past. Why? God wanted him to be healed and restored.
So the next time you’re wondering why your past continues to follow you, God is trying to bring healing and restoration to your life. Now, it may not happen over night, or in a year to two, but know that it can happen, and you can get through it. It won’t be easy, but you can get through it. I’ve even realized for myself, that in order to operate or walk fully into my calling effectively, healing AND restoration is needed. I started my healing journey three years ago, but now I’m choosing to be restored. Restoration is definitely on the way.
So that’s why I look to Joseph. We may have experienced different traumatic situations, but if he can get through it, I know I can too.