Back to Joseph who was left in prison… The cup bearer to the king had forgotten all about Joseph. He hadn’t given Joseph another thought once he was set free.
Two full years later Pharaoh had two dreams in one night that distressed him greatly. He called his magicians and wise men, but no one was able to interpret the dreams. This was what reminded the cup bearer of Joseph. He remembered when he too had a disturbing dream that needed to be interpreted. He told Pharaoh about Joseph, a prisoner, who had interpreted his and the chief baker’s dreams accurately.
So Pharaoh immediately called for Joseph. After Joseph shaved and cleaned himself up, he was brought before Pharaoh. Pharaoh said to Joseph that he heard he was able to interpret dreams. Joseph was quick to say that it wasn’t within his power, but it would be by the power of God alone that he would tell Pharaoh the meaning of his dreams.
So Pharaoh told Joseph about his dreams…
Seven fat, healthy cows were eaten up by seven skinny, sick-looking cows, but they still looked sick and skinny.
Seven beautiful, full heads of wheat were eaten up by seven dried out, withered heads of wheat, but they were still dried out and withered.
Joseph told Pharaoh that the two dreams had the same meaning, and because he had the dream twice it was sure to happen. He went on and explained that the seven fat, healthy cows, and the beautiful, full heads of wheat represented seven years of plenty. The seven sick-looking, skinny cows and the dried up, withered heads of wheat represented seven years of famine.
God not only gave Joseph the interpretation of Pharaoh’s dreams, but He also gave Joseph wisdom and understanding how to handle the years of plenty so that during the years of famine the nation would be saved.
“Joseph’s suggestions were well received by Pharaoh and his officials. So Pharaoh asked his officials, “Can we find anyone else like this man so obviously filled with the spirit of God?”Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has revealed the meaning of the dreams to you, clearly no one else is as intelligent or wise as you are. You will be in charge of my court, and all my people will take orders from you. Only I, sitting on my throne, will have a rank higher than yours.” Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I hereby put you in charge of the entire land of Egypt.”Then Pharaoh removed his signet ring from his hand and placed it on Joseph’s finger. He dressed him in fine linen clothing and hung a gold chain around his neck. Then he had Joseph ride in the chariot reserved for his second-in-command. And wherever Joseph went, the command was shouted, “Kneel down!” So Pharaoh put Joseph in charge of all Egypt. And Pharaoh said to him, “I am Pharaoh, but no one will lift a hand or foot in the entire land of Egypt without your approval.” Genesis 41:37-44
From prison, to royalty!
I can’t image what Joseph must have been thinking as Pharaoh spoke those words over him…
Can we find anyone else like this man so obviously filled with he Spirit of God…
clearly no one else is as intelligent or wise as you are.
I hereby put you in charge of the entire land of Egypt.
Just moments before he was a prisoner, held captive for several years. Dirty, unshaven…
For thirteen years Joseph faced a pit, slavery, and prison where the enemy meant to steal his dreams through offense, bitterness, and unforgiveness. He meant to kill Joseph’s identity and redefine him through deception. He meant to destroy Joseph’s destiny, by keeping him locked in fear and shame.
But Joseph himself had two dreams many years before. Two times which meant they were sure to come true! They were God dreams – dreams that stayed with Joseph – no matter what the enemy threw at Joseph, no matter how much time passed, he never let go of his dreams.
God’s perfect timing was perfecting Joseph…
Then, at just the right time, in just the right situation, Joseph was brought up, out of prison…
filled with the Spirit of God,
filled with understanding and wisdom,
ready and prepared…
to carry out the dream God placed in his heart thirteen years before!
What are the dreams has God given you? Has God given you a dream that seems impossible? A dream that is way beyond your understanding, or ability? Has your dream faded because it was so long ago? Or has the enemy stolen your dream through offense, deception, or disappointment?
The thing about God dreams is that when you receive the dream, you aren’t ready for the dream to be fulfilled.
The time between is just as important as the actual fulfillment.
There is heart work that needs to be done…
Holding to a God dream through the pits and prisons of life will…
Or, the pits and prisons of life will be the very things that bring doubt and fear, and will…
Your beliefs determine your direction…
It is a matter of focus,
a decision to trust,
an act of obedience.
May this story of Joseph bring you encouragement today. No matter how long ago you received a God dream, no matter whether you are in a pit of offense, enslaved in deception, or in a prison of self, God is there with you and remains faithful to His promises.
He will enable you to thrive even in the difficult places.
God will never leave you, or give up on you.
God is for you,
and will always give you the ability to overcome everything you face.
Ability to forgive any wrong done against you. Forgiveness sets you free from your pit. Nothing done against you is worth holding on to. Forgiveness makes the difference between staying in a pit or realizing the fulfillment of your dream.
Ability to serve others. Jesus lived a humble and selfless life and He called you to do the same. To die to self, to put aside your desires, your hurts, your disappointments, in order to serve others, prepares and equips you for the promotion of your dream being fulfilled.
Ability to know things, to do things, and to say things beyond your own understanding. God has given you His Holy Spirit as your counselor, your guide into all truth. Not only will He empower you to forgive, and to serve, but He will give you the supernatural understanding and wisdom you need to encourage, and to impact others around you as your dream becomes a reality.
Trust that the time between, though it is meant for your harm, is actually intended for your good, for the salvation of many.
God dreams will be fulfilled…
“Everything I plan will come to pass, for I do whatever I wish.” Isaiah 46:10
“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.” Philippians 2:13