Location: MICHIGAN, United States

Thank you for stopping by. It's my hope you find glimpses of my Savior interwoven thru my writings. I am the wife to one husband for over 25 years, a blessed mama to a dozen children, yes each born from me ~ two of which see Jesus face to face & ten at home, all of us yearning to see Jesus someday. We have been home educating for over 18 years with . . . well, another 15 years to go (the youngest is 3, the oldest 23!) I have walked through rejection, to continually learning I am CALLED, LOVED and forever KEPT by God - never, ever to be rejected by Jesus! (Jude 1:1) I've walked through deep sorrow to find that joy does come again, though the night may be long; I've witnessed God orchestrating miracles with my children still beyond my comprehension, & I am seeing new love forming as we begin a new road of older children finding life mates. My life has and is a journey, from the deepest, almost rock bottom pit, to stumbling through my faith and looking towards the ultimate climax of everlasting life in heaven. Will you be joining me here and there? ~ Loni

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Joseph wept

I just finished reading the book of Genesis. I’ve gotten a little behind in my reading through the Bible this year, but I’ve learned so much. I am not just reading to read but have been following a book and also BibleBlog.Com.

There are numerous things that stood out to me in reading through Genesis – one being God’s great compassion and patience. I’ve seen more of the failures of men – things that are horrible sins and yet we remember them as great men of God. In one verse it can be talking about the sins of the man . . . and go to the next verse and see “the Lord blessed him” (regarding Isaac in Genesis 26). Some even make the same wayward decisions as their father – such as Isaac and Abraham.

Jacob and Joseph really came more alive to me. I could read the great compassion and struggles and despair they went through. Most know the story well of Joseph and his colorful coat, and he was sold to the Ishmaelites. We read how Jacob mourned for his son for many days (Gen. 37:34). The next verse caught my attention-

Gen: 37:35: Then all his sons and all his daughters arose to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. And he said, “Surely I will go down to Sheol in mourning for my son.” So his father wept for him.

I see his sons and daughters thinking – maybe even saying aloud “Come on dad – life goes on – get over it – Joseph is not coming back – there’s nothing we can do – you got us – stop crying!” But the grief was so deep.

Over 20 years later, when the famine was going on and Joseph's brothers needed to return to Egypt with their now youngest brother, Benjamin, and they were trying to talk their father into letting Benjaimin go. Jacob finally gives in and says: (Genesis 43:13,14) "Take your brother also, and arise, return to the man; and may God Almighty grant you compassion in the sight of the man, so that he will release to you your other brother and Benjamin. And as for me, if I am bereaved of my children, I am bereaved."

It is sad to see how discouraged and fatalistic Jacob is after all these years. God allows us to see this man's emotions and how the death of a child even after all these years, still grieved him greatly. He wasn't over it.

The other thing that stood out to me was Joseph's great compassion and the numerous times it is said in Genesis how Joseph wept.

  1. Joseph tells the brothers to leave one behind while the brothers go and bring Benjamin back to him. The brothers talk amongst themselves and feel this judgement against them is because of the what they did to Joseph and sinning against him. They do not know Joseph can understand their language and at one point Joseph "turned away from them and wept." (Gen. 42:24)
  2. When Benjamin is brought before Joseph, and he sees his brother, Genesis 43:30 says: "Joseph hurried out for he was deeply stirred over his brother, and he sought a place to weep; and he entered his chamber and wept there."
  3. Joseph had had everyone leave the room when he revealed himself to his brothers, and (Genesis 45:2) says: "He wept so loudly that the Egyptians heard it, and the household of Pharaoh heard it."
  4. Genesis 46:29 - "Joseph prepared his chariot and went up to Goshen to meet his father Israel; as soon as he appeared before him, he fell on his neck and wept on his neck a long time."
  5. When Jacob died, (Genesis 50:1) "Joseph threw himself upon his father and wept over him and kissed him."
  6. After the mourning time and burial were overwith, Joseph's brothers were very worried that Joseph would hold a grudge against them for what they did to Joseph, and now would be their payback time. They sent a message to Joseph begging for forgiveness. Genesis 50:17 says: " . . .And Joseph wept when they spoke to him." . . . Genesis 50:21 "So therefore, do not be afraid; I will provide for you and your little ones." So he comforted them and spoke kindly to them."

The other thing I found interesting was to read how they grieved for someone, and all the openess and long time of sharing. When Jacob died, they had an "embalming time" which they preserved the body. Gen. 50:3 says the embalming time was 40 days and the Egyptians wept for him for 70 days. The procession before the burial was quite some thing too (Genesis 50:7-10):"So Joseph went up to bury his father, and with him went up all the servants of Pharaoh, the elders of his household and all the elders of the land of Egypt, and all the household of Josephhis brothers and his father's household; they left only their little ones and their flocks and their herds in the land of Goshen. There also went up with him both chariots and horsemen; and it was a very great company. When they came to the threshing floor of Atad, which is beyond the Jordan, they lamented there with a very great and sorrowful lamentation; and he observed seven days mourning for his father. " Verse 13 says: "his sons carried him to the land of Canaan and buried him in the cave of the field of Machpelah . . ."

This was not a hurry, let's get this overwith, get on with life, funeral. This took place over several months.

In reading this it struck me how God allowed it to be shown how emotional Joseph and Jacob were - allowed to show their real being and the deep grief they carried. In our society now, it seems emotions should be hidden, and pain should disappear. To lose any family member or close friend is very difficult. But reading how Jacob,even after 20 years, deeply grieved over the loss of his son, to the point, he just wanted to die. Mourning is not over when the funeral is over, or when you've made it to a certain time period. And men grieve greatly too. If you have made it to reading to the end here, you probably are wondering why I wrote all this. We are doing much better than we were a year ago. We are trying to get back to more normals and overall things seem to be going well. Yet, in our minds there is the missing person, that should be a part of our family. It's just not complete. Norm said just a week or so ago, that he knows we can go on, there is joy again, and we can have fun again, but there will always be the thoughts of how Matthew would have enjoyed certain things, or the remembrances of the past when he participated in things we are doing now. We still ache, yet most think everything is ok. And, it's not just the emotions of a woman, but my husband too. He's still a man that is hurting greatly, and yet, in our society, it does not seem proper for another man to ask him how he is doing, and if Norm brings up Matthew's name, there's a pause in the conversation, and the subject is quickly changed. We've changed, friendships and relationships have changed, our children have changed (and still struggle daily with certain things), but joy is returning, looking forward to the newness of the morning is here, and life does goes on, still with tears.


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