“So when Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped him of his robe—the richly ornamented robe he was wearing—and they took him and threw him into the cistern…As they sat down to eat their meal they looked up and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites…Their camels were loaded with spices, balm and myrrh, and they were on their way to take them down to Egypt…So…his brothers pulled Joseph up out of the cistern and sold him for twenty shekels of silver…”
“Jesus looked at him and said, ‘How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! Indeed it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.’ Those who heard this asked, ‘Who then can be saved?’ Jesus replied, ‘What is impossible with men is possible with God.’”
“These are the words of him who is the First and the Last, who died and came to life again. I know your afflictions and your poverty—yet you are rich!”
God of all goodness, you offer the only treasure that turns our hearts from coveting to compassion.
You stripped Joseph of both wealth and arrogance and led him on a camel-back journey, positioning him perfectly as your humbled servant. His affliction became his salvation.
When we cling to gaudy symbols of our own status, free us from the ornaments that hinder our walk with you. Help us lose our lives so that we may slip through the narrow way and enter the kingdom.
This we ask in the name of the one who became impoverished so we might become impossibly rich through him, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Listen to ‘Upon a Life I Did Not Live’ by Sandra McCracken