aahh…sigh. my students, a certain period in particular, are really pushing me to the limits of frustration, with their blatant disrespect. i am so tempted to mete out justice and vengeance. however, God has reminded me (twice this week) about Joseph (Genesis ch. 37 to the end of the book). it is His kindness that leads us to repentance. we deserve justice and judgment for our wickedness…however He doesn’t give us what we deserve…rather He gives us kindness – expressed in all its fullness through the life of Christ. while humanity was heaping sins and abuse upon him, even then he willingly went to the cross for us, praying for us even as he hung upon the cross.
Joseph is a type of this kindness:
Joseph Reassures His Brothers
15 When Joseph’s brothers saw that their father was dead, they said, “What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?” 16 So they sent word to Joseph, saying, “Your father left these instructions before he died: 17 ‘This is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.’ Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father.” When their message came to him, Joseph wept.
18 His brothers then came and threw themselves down before him. “We are your slaves,” they said.
19 But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? 20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. 21 So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.
may mercy triumph over judgment in my heart and to my students.