There are times God works in ways that seem strange and even harsh to us. God had promised Abraham that he would be the father of many nations, and that he would inherit the land on which his people were dwelling. But then God said to him “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years.”(Genesis 15:13) That seems like a strange way for God to fulfill His great promises. Yet it was that time of slavery in Egypt that built a small clan of 70 people into a great nation of more than a million. It was that nation that came out of slavery to occupy the Promised Land. Was slavery and hard servitude a nice thing to go through. Certainly not. But God was able to use it for a great purpose of strengthening and preparing His people for a greater mission. We never really know just how God chooses to work, but we live in the covenant He has made with us in the Lord Jesus Christ, and trust that He will bring all things to their right conclusion for His purpose and for our good.