What the Life of Joseph Can Teach Us about the Powerful Tool of Forgiveness


Forgiveness is a Powerful Tool

I’m studying the life of Joseph this Sunday morning. I recently had a young guy call me very upset and crying. He shared with me something that had just happened to him—which he said “wasn’t fair.”

I mentioned the life of Joseph and how God often uses adversity and difficulty to move us in another direction. (Can I get a witness?)

In times of hardship, we often question the presence and purpose of God. The story of Joseph from the Bible teaches us a powerful lesson: while we may not have control of our circumstances, we have the ability to shape our responses and find hope even in life’s darkest times. Joseph’s life’s journey was filled with trials and tribulations. His later rise to power shows us how God’s divine plan unfolds in ways we never would have expected.

Joseph’s Brothers Sold Him Out!
Yes, Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery, and he was unjustly imprisoned and even “falsely accused.” Joseph faced challenges that could have crushed his spirit. Yet, throughout his journey, we see signs of divine intervention and a greater purpose at work. Even in Jospeh’s darkest moments, God continued to pursue him and using that adversity to prepare him for an unexpected rise to power and fulfill a bigger plan that would impact countless and the lives of his brothers and descendants.
Grace Church LaVergne
Grace Church 108 Stones River Rd, La Vergne, TN

Joseph’s story teaches us that while we cannot control our circumstances—yet, we can control our responses. Despite his hardships, Joseph remained faithful and resilient. Instead of crying in despair, he embraced each challenge as an opportunity for growth and relied on his strong faith in God’s plan.

RELATED:  Pastor Randy Berg and Grace Church: A Beacon of Faith & Hope in La Vergne

Patience Is a Virtue

Patience and trust were crucial aspects of Joseph’s journey. His rise to power took time—it was not immediate His life was a slow and gradual process that required perseverance. Joseph’s story reminds us that God’s timing may differ from our own. We often want results “now” — not tomorrow. During life’s struggles, it is important to trust in God’s divine timing and remain strong in our faith. We must realize that God is at work to fulfill His purpose for our lives if we remain faithful.

Joseph’s story offers hope and reassurance that God is present—even in times of darkness and hardship. It reminds us that our situation doesn’t define our future and encourages us to embrace those unexpected paths. Through unwavering faith, resilience, and trust, we can overcome adversity and find our true calling.



                  Professor Jordan Peterson “When You Forgive”

Joseph Forgave his Brothers

Joseph forgave his brothers. How many of us could do that? Hopefully you’ve noticed that we live in a broken world Forgiveness is crucial for breaking the cycle of pain and suffering. It offers us “freedom” from resentment—allowing renewed hope and inner peace.

Forgiveness can restore relationships by letting go of resentment and seeking understanding. It offers healing and builds stronger relationships. Forgiveness plays an important role in society and government. It breaks down barriers, encourages dialogue, and can offer positive change — in our often broken world.

Forgiveness is Strength

Forgiveness is not a sign of weakness for men (or women). It often requires great strength and courage. It takes inner strength to let go of anger and resentment, choosing forgiveness instead. Embracing forgiveness demonstrates maturity, emotional intelligence, and the ability to rise above conflicts, contributing to personal growth and healthier relationships… I personally witnessed it with my own WW11 and very difficult father, whom I forgave — sadly just hours before he passed away.


Mental Health and Forgiveness

Numerous studies that prove the positive impact of forgiveness on mental health and healing. For example, a study conducted by Toussaint and Webb (2005) found that forgiveness was associated with lower levels of depression, anxiety, and psychological distress. Another study by Witvliet, Ludwig, and Vander Laan (2001) revealed that forgiveness was linked to improved emotional well-being, reduced anger, and enhanced overall psychological functioning. Additionally, research by Lawler-Row and colleagues (2008) demonstrated that forgiveness was positively correlated with higher levels of life satisfaction and subjective well-being.


Jesus Instructs Us to Forgive
Forgiveness is crucial for our spiritual health, as taught by Jesus in Matthew 6:14-15. Just as God extends grace and mercy to us, we are called to forgive those who have wronged us. The lack of forgiveness can have severe negative consequences, leading to bitterness, bad relationships, and even physical sickness like chronic pain and fatigue.
However, through forgiveness, we can experience God’s grace and restore our relationships…
Jesus said, “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you.” ~ Matthew 6:14