At last the seven years of bumper crops throughout the land of Egypt came to an end. Then the seven years of famine began, just as Joseph had predicted. Genesis 41:53-54 NLT
His famine entailed languishing in a WWII concentration camp.
Someone discovered the poem the Jewish prisoner wrote on the wall of a cellar in the Cologne concentration camp. It began as follows:
“I believe in the sun
even when it is not shining
And I believe in love,
even when there’s no one there.
And I believe in God,
even when he is silent.”
Famines are caused by several things other than a simple shortage of food: war, inflation, crop failure, government policies, and population imbalance. Famines also lead to a few complications: malnutrition, starvation, epidemics, population displacement, water shortage, and, of course, death.
Joseph knew about a famine because God told him it was becoming. As second in command in Egypt, he prepared the country for its coming by storing crops during the seven years of plenty that preceded the seven years of famine.
But another type of famine exists that has nothing to do with food shortage. As the Jewish prisoner experienced, it’s the famine of God’s hiddenness, silence, and seemingly unfairness. If we’re honest with ourselves, all of us have experienced times when God didn’t appear to care—and didn’t even seem to be around. Our prayers seemed stagnant. His Word lost its appeal. Our world crumbled, and God didn’t intervene—or so we thought.
As God provided for the people of Egypt because of Joseph’s preparation, so He provides for us in our times of famine. He hasn’t left us, although we may feel He has. Feelings are just that—feelings. They don’t mimic reality. Jesus said He would never leave or forsake His children, and He doesn’t.
During famines, our duty is to trust God. When we don’t know the next step to take, we keep going in the same direction with the faith that the last step He directed us to take was the correct one.
Satan wants to use the famine to drive us away from God. God desires to use it to draw us closer to Him, to mature our faith, and to prepare us for other opportunities ahead.
Don’t waste your famines. God has better things ahead.
Tell us about one of your famines.
Prayer: Father, we trust You to care for us and to direct us through our periods of famine.
Tweetable: Is God taking you through a famine?
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