He called down famine on the land and destroyed all their supplies of food; and he sent a man before them -- Joseph, sold as a slave. They bruised his feet with shackles, his neck was put in irons, till what he foretold came to pass, till the word of the LORD proved him true. The king sent and released him, the ruler of peoples set him free. He made him master of his household, ruler over all he possessed, to instruct his princes as he pleased and teach his elders wisdom.
If ever there was a person who was justified in second-guessing God's plan for his life, it was Joseph. His life started out fine. He was a favorite of his father. But his life quickly deteriorated. As a young lad he was sold to Ismaelites by his jealous brothers and taken to Egypt. There he was bought by Potiphar and worked as a slave. Later he was falsely accused of a crime and spent several years in prison. Someone was to tell Pharaoh about him, but forgot! I can imagine Joseph saying, "It doesn't pay to serve the Lord. I try to obey God and all I get is trouble."
But that's not how he reacted. We do not see in the account of Joseph that he complained or wallowed in his misery. Even through all his misfortunes, he trusted God and made the best of his situation. At Potiphar's house, he did such an outstanding job that he was put in charge. In prison, he was also given a position of authority. Instead of feeling sorry for himself, he did his best and succeeded.
Finally God's plan for Joseph's life became plain. Instead of being sent to Egypt because of jealousy, we see that God deliberately sent Joseph there to save His people. Joseph's time in prison was a time of testing. He passed the test, and when the famine came, Joseph was ready to be put in charge. Joseph understood and told his bothers, "You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives." (Genesis 50:20)
The next time your circumstances seem bleak, and you want to second-guess God's plan for you, remember Joseph. God's plan is best and we never need to second-guess Him.
Lord, Help me to trust in Your plan for my life, even when I don't understand.