Category Archives: Genesis

Genesis 44-47; Luke 14

I want to spend some alone time with God because I love Him. It reminds me of my granddaughter, who, sitting on Nana’s lap whispered in her ear as we were to take her home with us for a couple of days – “Nana, let’s go now, I need some alone time with you and Papa.”

When I think of the story of Joseph there are a few points that I can relate to.

Look at Joseph’s ability to forgive. Was not the miracle of grace obvious to his relationship with God? It was beautiful. When I spend time alone with God, do I not want to connect with others by praying that God would move heaven and earth in favour of those I am praying for? I can only imagine what Joseph’s prayer life looked like as he spent time with God, but something tells me his family was a key component and by doing so he was never really separated from them.

So now, when I come to your servant, my father, and the boy is not with us—since our father’s life is so attached to the boy’s life— when he sees that the boy is not with us, he will die. So your servants will bring the gray hair of your servant, our father, down to Sheol in sorrow.  For your servant accepted responsibility for the boy from my father, saying, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, then my father can let me take the blame forever.’  So now, please let your servant remain as a slave to my lord instead of the boy, and let the boy go up with his brothers.  For how shall I go up to my father if the boy is not with me? I fear that I may see the evil that would overtake my father.” – Genesis 44:30-34 NASB

Look at the miracle speech of the brothers, so different than it was with Joseph. Somehow they too felt the power of Joseph’s prayers and each of them, especially Judah, found a way to get back to being right, leaving behind the life he once had.

And Joseph responds with affection and gives them an invitation to approach.

Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Please come closer to me.” And they came closer. And he said, “I am your brother Joseph, whom you sold to Egypt. – Genesis 45:4 NASB

While I spend time alone with God, what wonderful miracles take place when I am surrounded by those I have been praying for. The invitation to come.

I am truly saddened by how many people, including the majority of them who call themselves Christians, who are looking for meaning and purpose in the lives. They fail to see that the answer to that question is God. My purpose is not to make more money, become more powerful, sell or buy more things, do more things, travel more places, or whatever it is that I might think I am waiting for in this life. My life purposes are found in God alone.

Father, thank You for the miracles that come from being alone with You.

Erwin (evanlaar1922)



Filed under 5 day reading plan, 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Cover to cover, Genesis, Luke, New Testament, Old Testament, reading plan

Gen. 38-40; Luke 12; Ps. 7

While they were in prison, Pharaoh’s cup-bearer and baker each had a dream one night, and each had its own meaning, When Joseph saw them the next morning, he noticed that they both looked upset. “Why do you look so worried today?” he asked them. And they replied, “We both had dreams last night, but no one can tell us what they mean.” “Interpreting dreams is God’s business,” Joseph replied. “Go ahead and tell me your dreams.” Genesis 40:5-8 NLT

Sometimes I can get so caught up with my struggles that I miss how God might want to use me in someone else’s life. Joseph had a renewed perspective and insight. God put these men in his path. He was able to minister to them while he was waiting for his own breakthrough. Joseph trusted in God and his provision for his life. Do I? God was with Joseph and he showed him favor. God didn’t forget Joseph & he doesn’t forget me.

What is the price of five sparrows-two copper coins? Yet God does not forget a single one of them. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” Luke 12:6&7 NLT

Why should I worry?

Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things? “Look at the lilies and how they grow.” Luke 12:26&27 NLT

Dear Father, I want to be lead by your Holy Spirit. Thank you for your grace and mercy. Amen.

I will thank the Lord because he is just; I will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High.” Psalms 7:17 NLT


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Filed under 66 Books, Genesis, Luke, Psalms

Gen. 5-8; Luke 2

“After another 40 days, Noah opened the window he had made in the boat and released a raven. The bird flew back and forth until the floodwaters on the earth had dried up. He also released a dove to see if the water had receded and it could find dry ground. But the dove could find no place to land because the water still covered the ground. So it returned to the boat, and Noah held out his hand and drew the dove back inside. After waiting another seven days, Noah released the dove again. This time the dove returned to him in the evening with a fresh olive leaf in its beak. Then Noah knew the floodwaters were almost gone. He waited another seven days and then released the dove again. This time it did not come back. Noah was now 601 years old. On the first day of the new year, ten and a half months after the flood began, the floodwaters had almost dried up from the earth. Noah lifted back the covering of the boat and saw the surface of the ground was drying. Two more months went by, and at last the earth was dry!” Genesis 8:6-14 NLT

Noah had the patience to wait on God’s timing. He didn’t lose hope that the promise would be fulfilled. He seemed to have a calm that God was in control and was protecting his family. Even when the water was gone, God knew it wasn’t safe for them to leave the boat yet. Did 2 more months of waiting make them frustrated and anxious? I can only imagine that I would have been.

“At that time there was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon. He was righteous and devout and was eagerly waiting for the Messiah to come and rescue Israel. The Holy Spirit was upon him and had revealed to him that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.” Luke 2:25&26NLT

“Anna, a prophet, was also there in the Temple. She was the daughter of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. Her husband died when they had been married only seven years. Then she lived as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the Temple, but stayed there day and night, worshipping God with fasting and prayer. She came along just as Simeon was talking with Mary and Joseph, and she began praising God. She talked about the child to everyone who had been waiting expectantly for God to rescue Jerusalem.” Luke 2:36-38 NLT

Simeon and Anna never lost hope that they would see the Messiah. They saw the promise fulfilled. They must have been overflowing with joy. I want to have a heart posture of surrender. Am I willing to lay down my control to the one who knows what is best for me? Trusting in His promises and plan for my life?

Thank you Father for your faithfulness. I look forward with expectant hope. I desire to be lead by your Holy Spirit. I eagerly await your return. Amen.



Filed under 66 Books, Genesis, Luke

Genesis 1-4; Luke 1

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

Genesis 1:1-2 ESV

In the beginning the earth held just a promise of what was to come, like the deepest dark before the sunrise of a new day, or the final sleep before the first month of a new year. None of the beauty of creation was visible as God spoke the universe into existence on that very first day ever. Yet there was God, hovering literally and figuratively over the beginnings. He had a plan. For celestial wonders, vibrant plants, a diversity of creatures, and then the pinnacle of his creation. His final handiwork he could craft in his image. Man would have many physical similarities to the animals God created, but in people he put an imprint of himself.

So God created man in his own image,
    in the image of God he created him;
    male and female he created them.

Genesis 1:27 ESV

the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.

Genesus 2:7 ESV

God fashioned man according to his own image. With his own breath, God breathed life into that first man. This final creation could think, reason, communicate, and create on a level far beyond the rest of the material world. Everything else in existence God had made with simple words, but he took more time in the creation of one man than he had in conjuring the whole cosmos.The universe is a true marvel, but the creation of mankind holds greater complexity than everything else because of our immaterial substance, the breath of God, the God-imprint that we still bear.

Unfortunately, sin marred this beautiful creation. Sin has brought pain, disease, separation, and death. God’s marvelous intent for creation was relatively short-lived, as he knew it would be. In his divine plan, he even included his response to man’s sin and rebellion. He would provide a way of redemption. His promise of a Messiah he tucked into the story even here at the beginning of time. Animal skins, bruising of Satan. Judgement, but not without hope.

Thousands of years later, Mary and Zechariah would erupt with praise at the long awaited fulfillment of the Messiah’s coming.

And his mercy is for those who fear him
    from generation to generation.

Luke 1:50 ESV

because of the tender mercy of our God,
    whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high
79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
    to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Luke 1:78,79 ESV

God’s plan of redemption reawakened worship in a profound way. The beginning of the life of Christ was another creation, as is evident in the beginning of each gospel, especially John 1 that is patterned after Genesis 1. A new beginning. A moving out of darkness once again.

I envision God rewriting the first verses of Genesis each new year, on a smaller scale. “In the beginning of the year, God created January. January was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of each day. And the Spirit of God was hovering over all that was to come.” Obviously, that’s not what the verse says, but I feel a similar sense of anticipation for all of creation that is to come in Genesis 1 as I do in this beginning of a new year. I imagine that God hovered at that moment before creation with both joy and sorrow at what would follow. Despite the looming evil, God created and also planned for the needed redemption.

As I head into this new year, I carry that story in my heart. God’s hovering spirit over the year ahead as he continues to guide and orchestrate, and shower grace and mercy. The knowledge that sin will bring flaws to my beautiful hopes and dreams for the year ahead. The confidence that God redeems when I fail or when others disrupt. With a trusting heart, I will follow God’s example and begin crafting the year ahead with goals and plans and structure, resting in his continued hand over it all despite my humanness.

Creator God, I surrender this year ahead to your plan. Guide my thoughts, decisions, and actions to begin well, to continue when my energy wanes and I face disillusionment, and to finish strong. May this year be a beautiful testimony to your grace and mercy, giving light to those who sit in darkness around me as you guide our feet in the way of peace. In Jesus name, amen.

Erin (6intow)


Filed under Genesis, Luke

Genesis 42:29-45:15

There are two arenas I am challenged in today – discrimination and boundaries.

Joseph was served at his private table, the brothers off by themselves and the Egyptians off by themselves (Egyptians won’t eat at the same table with Hebrews; it’s repulsive to them). The brothers were seated facing Joseph, arranged in order of their age, from the oldest to the youngest. They looked at one another wide-eyed, wondering what would happen next. When the brothers’ plates were served from Joseph’s table, Benjamin’s plate came piled high, far more so than his brothers. And so the brothers feasted with Joseph, drinking freely. – Genesis 43:32-34 MSG

I noticed how much prejudice there was in the seating arrangements. When it comes to discrimination, I do not believe I am even aware that I could very well be the one judging from the inside and then finding myself, on the outside, acting them out. I asked God to check my heart to see if I had ever thought I was better than others and how did I act. I am sad to say that God brought back memories of times where I did act like I was better than others and how I held them in contempt in my heart and how I portrayed that in my actions. I had to ask God for forgiveness for my arrogance. There is something about pride that enslaves – a poisonous root. I know that this type of partiality and discrimination are incompatible with being a follower of Jesus.

That leads me to my second thought about setting boundaries. While I accept God’s forgiveness, I think about what that might really look like when I am with others who have harmed me. While I have heard many sermons on what forgiveness looks like, I think I really like Joseph’s approach here. He used a test to see if his brothers were in a better place than when he was with them. How they performed in the test would determine his next course of action. I believe that today we might use the term – boundaries – when determining our trust factor.

As his father Jacob honoured him and that caused resentment among his brothers, Joseph mimicked that by honouring Benjamin as his distinguished guest. He wanted to honour Benjamin, but he was also testing his brothers’ feelings. Would they hate Benjamin as they had hated him? They passed the test.

Sometimes in the hurry towards forgiveness, which I am a fan of, I still think that boundaries are a healthy place for us to create. I never thought of testing relationships to see if they have grown or changed but it sounds like a good place to also start getting rid of some of my prejudices that I have created along the way.

Father, I am challenged today and ask that You walk with me and show me how to be more like You. I ask for Your wisdom as I navigate these two areas of my life.

Erwin (evanlaar1922)

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Filed under 66 Books, 7-day reading pln, Bible in a year reading plan, Cover to cover, Genesis, Old Testament, reading plan