“I just want to know, when will it be my turn??”
“Oh my goodness!”
My friend barges into the empty classroom a little flustered. I didn’t have to ask him what was wrong because I knew he wasn’t done expressing himself.
“Facebook just announced yet another friend getting proposed to – what is this?!”
I’m chuckling as I continue to doodle in my notebook. He takes a sit, rests his elbows on his knees, and buries his face inside his palms.”I just want to know, when will it be my turn??” he muffles.
Let’s be honest. This is the feeling most feel when they see that someone else’s life seems to be ‘progressing better’ than theirs. A buddy from your elementary school days just flaunted their wedding pictures on Facebook. A relative gets promoted at their job overseas. A fellow classmate just received an internship at Google with a $30K salary at the end of the summer. We’re happy for them, but we’re not happy. What’s running through our head? “Ugh! When is it going to be my turn??” We find it hard to be genuinely enthusiastic for them. Instead, we give one of those high-pitched cheers and half-hearted smiles. It may not necessarily be that we don’t want success for others. We’re just worried all the success stories will run out by the time it gets to be our turn. The worry is we may never get to our own big break.
So there’s this young lad in the Bible. He goes by Joseph… I call him Joe. You see, at the age of thirty, Joe becomes the second man in control of Egypt, only answerable to the King. Everything and everyone else were completely under his influence. But you’ve got to understand that for about fifteen years prior to being the ‘Oga on Top’, (Nigerian colloquialism for “Head Honcho”/”Big Boss”), Joe was hated, beaten, betrayed, and eventually sold off by his blood brothers; framed and jailed by his boss and boss’s wife, and completely forgotten and abandoned by the King’s cup bearer, who Joe helped out when they became jail buddies.
Yet the Bible says “God was with him”.
Let me repeat that: God was with him.
I know! – kinda sounds ridiculous, right?
I’m quite sure Joe was frustrated.
When yet another jail friend got pardoned, flaunting the hashtag #prisonernomore all over their social media, Joe probably thought how unfair he was being treated, and how he deserved freedom more than anyone else in that jail cell room.
But interestingly enough, scripture doesn’t state that. It illustrates how he went with the flow, doing a phenomenal job at flourishing wherever he was planted: the pit, the home of Potipher, the jail cell, and eventually the palace.
Despite his circumstances, Joe was always loyal, always authentic, always obedient and always hardworking. Joe set the bar high on exactly how our attitude should be whenever it seems like our big break will never come.
It may not be our bright and shining moment yet, but whenever we get the opportunity to witness someone else’s big break, remember that God is purposely placing a life test before us, checking to see how we will answer the following test questions:
1) Can we make a personal effort to flourish in the disappointing times?
2) Can we be genuinely happy for others without looking down at our present situation? Yes/No
If our answers are sincerely affirmative, God will turn our tests to our testimonies, turning and shifting what we thought would never budge. Don’t be too focused on where you think you are supposed to be, that the realization of His never ending presence becomes a blur. Focus on you and focus on God. He is always with us and that comforts.