Accident and Emergency is a fascinating place. Most families end up there with significant regularity. I think we amazingly managed to avoid it on the whole, but I remember one evening visit with our youngest. He had fallen off his trike with no apparent injury, until it came to time for bed, and changing him into his pyjamas was suddenly greeted with unaccustomed screams. What a palaver! We had to find someone to mind the other two while one drove and one consoled the poor little chap, all the way to the hospital. We registered at the desk, and waited… and waited…
At first, it was a real struggle to contain the distressed toddler without upsetting the very full waiting room. But as the hours passed, his discomfort diminished, and we had grounds to hope his arm wasn’t broken. By the time we actually got in to see a doctor, he was zooming round like Tigger on a sugar-high, and our efforts not to disturb the waiting room were for an altogether different reason! The doctor assured us it was not unusual, and we were not paranoid parents; with some embarrassment we gratefully took home our fully-recovered son.
So when we think someone has a broken arm, we automatically go to the hospital. When the car breaks down we call the garage. Our society is full of plumbers, builders, physiotherapists… specialists that we can call on when something goes wrong. But what do we do when their expertise fails? And there are things in life that worry us for which there are no experts.
Pharaoh was in that situation, in Genesis 41:1-8. He’d had these two very troubling dreams. He’d asked all the experts, but no-one could help him. That is a terrible situation to be in. As Christians, we would claim that we can always turn to God for his help. This is true, but when you hit a crisis, that doesn’t always feel like it’s enough. Sometimes it’s human hands and human ears that we need too. I don’t think we should feel guilty about that. I think that is the way God has made us. No man – or woman – is an island. We are not designed to be totally self-sufficient. God has made us to need others. Of course he has also designed us to need him. So when God in a person can support another, we have the best.
God had invested hard in Joseph, and placed him in exactly the right position (however uncomfortable for him) to be of service to Pharaoh; he was there when Pharaoh needed him. If life is a bit uncomfortable for me, maybe I should be looking out for someone else to help; and all the more if life is smooth! Who am I here for? Let’s ask God for some divine connections.