For today, Mi-Keitz, Genesis 41:1 – 44:17 – Joseph’s dream interpretations in prison and Egypt, his ascent to influence under Pharaoh, and the first part of Joseph’s encounter with his brothers.
As we go through the month of Elul preparing for the holidays, the story of conflict and resolution between Joseph and his brothers seems particularly appropriate.
A quick recap: Joseph was an obnoxious and precocious child, rubbing his favored status in his older brothers’ noses. This got him sold into slavery, and eventually, many years later, his brothers came to him after he rose as a man of power in Egypt to try and get food since famine grips their homeland. Joseph tested them, and when they proved their reluctance to sacrifice their other younger brother Benjamin, he reconciled with them.
When we suffer wrongs, allowing ourselves to see those who have hurt us as having learned a lesson from their misdeeds may be a huge challenge. Opening ourselves up to the idea of offering forgiveness may be even more difficult than reconciling, and thus all the more important.