Then a new king, to whom Joseph meant nothing, came to power in Egypt. (Ex. 1:8)

Summers in the south come with the expectation of evening thunderstorms, especially if you have lived here a while. Often, the meteorologists call for it, and other times it comes without warning. Recently, while out in the yard putting in a new flower bed, I overheard distant thunder. I strongly encouraged my kids to go inside, to which one commented, “But Dad, I don’t see any lightning.” What she in her naiveté didn’t know is if you hear thunder, you can be struck by lightning.

I’ve heard it said that “what you don’t know can’t hurt you.” However, life has taught me that this saying is not true. What you don’t know can not only hurt you and others, but it could also cost you everything, maybe even your life.

In this story, the new king didn’t know Joseph and the favor he walked in with the previous leaders. Unfortunately, this lack of knowledge led to fear and the oppression of many people. However, what he also didn’t know was that God’s hand was upon the Israelites and no matter what he did to them God was still planning to use them. Jesus even said from the cross, “Forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34). May we have the same heart for those whose lack of knowledge or compassion leads them to hurt others.

Consider whether you need to pray to forgive someone.

Santes Beatty is director of multiethnic ministries for The Wesleyan Church.

© 2019 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.
Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.