July 9, 2011
As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. Genesis 50:20
The title of this devotion is "Lemonade," but in truth, it has nothing to do with lemons.
It has to do with potatoes.
It was the year 1853 and George Crum, a chef who was working in Saratoga Springs, New York, was dealing with a complaining customer. It appears the unhappy patron did not find his fried potatoes to be crisp enough.
Again and again he sent his spuds back to the chef for a reworking. Time and again the chef had tried to make the man happy. As the interchange progressed, both men became more and more upset.
Finally, Chef Crum broke. He threw out the old potatoes and cut some new ones. He cut them paper thin and dropped them into ultra-hot fat. He delivered the plate of potatoes to the surprised patron. After a bite or two, the face of the pleased patron told Crum he had discovered something quite unique.
Indeed, he had! A complaining patron helped Crum invent America's most popular snack food: potato chips.
That story set me to wondering, is it possible the Lord sometimes gives us challenges so we might discover something wonderful? He most certainly did so for the Old Testament's Joseph. You remember that Joseph's brothers had sold him into slavery, and his master had thrown him unfairly into prison. There Joseph had languished for years, forgotten and alone.
But Joseph did not lose faith. Instead he trusted God would use these events to bring about a great good. This, of course, is exactly what did happen.
When His brothers stood before him, Joseph witnessed, "you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good."
My friends, I don't know what crosses you have been given. I do know the Father in heaven, the Father who proved His love for you by giving His Son as a payment for your forgiveness and salvation, can use those crosses for a good purpose -- if you are patient, if you will let Him, if your eyes are opened so you might see.
To ask for a faith that will patiently await God's plan, we pray,
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, sometimes things happen which get in the way of me seeing You, Your love and Your plan for me. At such times, I ask that the Holy Spirit will allow me to see clearly the Savior's commitment to me. May I see how His cross has won my salvation? With such a sight before my eyes, I will believe that You can also use my crosses for good. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries