Today I’m recalling that Joseph in the book of Genesis was a victim of human trafficking. He also suffered injustices resulting from being an immigrant.
Putting my feet in Joseph’s sandals, as it were, I’m wondering the following:
- What was it like for Joseph to be betrayed by his brothers and trafficked as he was… not merely sold into slavery, but oppressed by his own people?
- How did it feel for Joseph to be put up on a slave block and sold, like a commodity?
- What were his feelings toward the people profiting off of his sale?
- How did he react when he was wrongly accused of something, knowing that he was an immigrant with little defense in that culture?
- What did it feel like for Joseph to be put in jail without a trial?
- What was it like to not only be in jail, but never to have anyone visit him, ever, the entire time he was in jail, for something he didn’t do?
All in all I think Joseph had a pretty rough life, up until God reversed his “fortunes.” I’m so excited that Max Lucado’s new book on Joseph is coming out in September. I have read an advance copy of the book already and I think it’s one of Max’s best! The book marches you through the highs and lows of Joseph’s life and how he responded. The book is compassionate, practical, and biblical. You’ll love it! You can get the hard copy by clicking here or the eBook by clicking here.
Christianity Today interviewed Max Lucado about You’ll Get Through This on Joseph and the interview touched on the suffering of immigrants among other things:
Question from CT: You’ve spoken publicly about immigration reform. Has hearing the turbulent stories of immigrants in Texas influenced your view of this issue? Or have your convictions come more from reading the immigrant stories of biblical figures like Joseph?
Answer from Max Lucado: Joseph, yes, is an immigrant, and I have thought of him—and not just Joseph, but all the Bible characters that God took across borders in order to do his work. Living in San Antonio, in our church the immigration issue is very relevant. It can also be a very personal issue. I’m thinking of one lady in particular who was brought across the border by her parents as a baby and has grown up undocumented here in San Antonio, and then graduated as valedictorian from her class and went on to college. It shows how ignorant I was—when I first met her, I asked, “How is that possible?” She got pulled over for speeding, and, for a time there, we thought she was going to be deported. Even though she had grown up here and was living such a wonderful life.
A story like that is one reason I’ve been sympathetic with the struggles of undocumented immigrants. I don’t really get down in the weeds, in the policy—there are people far smarter than I on that. But whenever I have a chance, I say, “Can we not find a solution that both honors the law and respects the dignity of these people?” Maybe we will.
Maybe we will indeed!