"Good From Evil"
August 19, 2012
But Joseph said to them, “….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. So do not fear; I will provide for you and your little ones.” Thus he comforted them and spoke kindly to them. Genesis 50:19-21
The year was 1853 and George Crum was serving as a chef at an east coast resort.
The son of an African-American father and a Native-American mother, Crum had learned how to keep his temper in all kinds of situations. Well, just about all kinds of situations.
Right now one patron of Crum's restaurant was getting his goat. The fellow had ordered some french-fried potatoes, a dish any self-respecting kitchen could serve without any hitch or difficulty. Even so, the customer kept sending the fries back. "They're not crisp enough," he had complained. Crum really did try to correct the problem, but nothing he did was found to be acceptable.
Finally, in a fit of temper, Crum sliced a new bunch of spuds as thinly as he could; fried them until they were hard and doused them in salt. The patron, and his friends, and just about everyone at the resort fell in love with Crum's creation. Fell in love with, and kept ordering, potato chips, America's favorite snack.
Serendipity. That's what we're talking about in our Weekender devotions this month. Serendipity, that is looking for one thing and finding something better.
In George Crum's case, he wanted to get even with a customer but he found fame in the creation of a comfort food.
In the case of Joseph's brothers, they wanted to put their brother in his place. That's why they sold him into slavery. They went looking for revenge, but God gave them something better. After many years, and many almost unbelievable exploits, the Lord raised that brother to a position of authority. That position enabled Joseph to save his brothers, their families, and many others from starvation.
Which all goes to prove, my dear friends, that the Lord is ALWAYS in charge. When you feel down; when you feel there is no hope and things can't possibly get any worse, that's when the Lord can show He is Master of every situation.
He has the ability to turn a bad situation into something wonderful. He can take our wrongs and transform them so they produce something right and to His purpose and plan.
He can even take the unfair, unjust crucifixion of His Son and turn it into the means by which we are forgiven and saved.
Which is why we can finish this devotion with the Scriptural assurance, "…we know that for those who love God all things work together for good," Romans 8:28 (ESV)
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, today I give thanks that even though I don't deserve Your love, it is a constant in my life. Let me realize, even in the darkest of situations, You can bring light. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries