In ways mundane and profound, many of us know what it is to be Joseph. Sometimes, even our most deliberate donning of dread locks, wedding rings, saris, rainbow earrings, chadors, political buttons, and fist-sized Stars of David may well go unrecognized. Ultimately, in many ways, we decide when to stay hidden in order to have safety or control--or because it's too big a hassle--and when to reveal ourselves in order to have genuine relationships and integrity.
There is no easy right or wrong here. Though clearly Joseph's moment for genuine identity had arrived, the years of hiding were also part of God's plan. The most each of us can do is work for a larger society in which every person has the opportunity to say, "I am Joseph, your brother."