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Gen 37:3-4, 12-13, 17-18; Mt 21:33-43, 45-46

Today’s readings highlight Joseph and Jesus who came to greatness through slavery.  Joseph and Jesus are similar in that they were betrayed by loved ones.  Other similarities that grab my attention are the fact that both characters rose to help others through their adversity and that humans get sidetracked with over-comparing.

It’s common to compare our selves with others.  Comparing helps us learn about our uniqueness and to recognize God’s gifts in our selves and others.  Sometimes, humans lose sight of others’ giftedness and get caught in the trap of wanting what others have.  Perhaps it’s others’ wealth, personality, looks, sense of humor, or countless other gifts our neighbors may possess that we envy.  In the cases of Joseph and Jesus, others’ envy led to shackling the gifted ones.  Have you ever caught yourself losing sight of the giftedness of others and wanting what they possess?

The other aspect of today’s readings is how Joseph and Jesus both rose through their adversity to help others.  The common theme about the two stories is that they both stayed close to God throughout their struggles.  Staying close to God seems to be key to weathering the stormy times of our lives as well.  It could be a broken relationship, loss of a job, uprooting your family, the death of a loved one, or countless other events that could shackle our lives.  The wisdom seen in the scriptures of the day reminds us to stay close to God throughout those struggles.  My prayer is that we too may respond like Joseph and Jesus and use our adversity to help others.

By Eden Foord

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