Joseph was a young man when his jealous brothers threw him into a pit with the intention of selling him to the Ishmaelites. The Midianites beat them to it, and they came up with a plan to deceive their father.
Joseph ended up being a servant in Potiphar’s house until Potiphar’s wife lied on him and got him thrown into prison. Read more about his early years and the three lessons you can learn from his experiences in Continue to Live, While People Push You to Your Destiny.
Today, we’re going to pick up where we left off in Joseph’s life.
Joseph Took Matters into His Own Hands
Joseph was tired of being in prison for something he didn’t do. When the opportunity presented itself he took advantage of it. Something I don’t think he’s ever done.
One day two of Pharoah’s servants had dreams in the same night. Joseph saw they were troubled by something and inquired. They told him no one there could interpret their dreams for them.
As you would expect from Joseph by now, he gave God the credit for interpreting dreams. They told him the dreams and he gave them the interpretation. When he had finished speaking to the cupbearer he asked him to remember him when he got his position back. He wanted Pharoah to know he was imprisoned falsely. He had done nothing wrong.
For the first time in Joseph’s story, we see him taking matters into his own hands. He wanted out of the prison. He was tired of being punished for something he didn’t do. He put his trust in the cupbearer and Pharoah to deliver him from prison. He showed a sign of discontentment by doing this.
The cupbearer forgot about Joseph when he was restored to his position.
Joseph Tried to Hijack His Own Destiny
Joseph spent another two years in prison before the cupbearer remembered him. Joseph tried to hijack his own destiny, but God wouldn’t let him. If he had gotten out two years prior, who knows where he would have been. Maybe a slave in someone else’s house. Or a brick layer. Wherever he would have ended up would not be where God wanted him to be.
God has His own timetable for the world, the heavens, humanity as a whole, His people, and individuals. It wasn’t Joseph’s time to get out. The famine that was coming had not arrived yet. The organizational skills needed to pull off the most intense preparedness efforts ever seen wasn’t completely developed yet. The position he needed to be in was available yet. It had to be timed out perfectly if God was going to save all of those people.
Remember, it’s never about our timing. It’s always about God’s timing.
When the proper time came Pharoah had two dreams that troubled him. He called for all of the magicians and wise men of Egypt to interpret them. None of them could. This is when the cupbearer remembered Joseph.
Pharoah called for Joseph to be brought to him. The attendants make him presentable to stand before the King of Egypt. Pharoah incorrectly attributes being able to interpret dreams to Joseph. He lets Pharoah know only God can interpret dreams and give him an answer.
Pharoah tells Joseph the dreams. He has two different dreams about the same event. God gave him two dreams because the even was fixed and couldn’t be avoided. God wanted Pharoah to prepare for a severe famine, which would also impact His people.
Joseph went a step further and advised Pharoah in how to prepare. Pharoah recognized the spirit of the living God was in Joseph. This led to the biggest promotion of his life. He was second only to Pharoah. This meant he was above his first master and the warden. He was the second most important person in all of Egypt.
Joseph Brings Glory to God
Joseph was only 30 years old when he became the second most powerful person in Egypt. He continued to work hard, being honest in his business dealings, and proving he had integrity. All the while being a light to the people around him. The people knew the spirit of the living God rested with him.
In the midst of a pagan nation Joseph’s life pointed to the ultimate God, who is in heaven. Everyone who knew Joseph’s story knew he represented the invisible Hebrew God. This God could interpret dreams of man, foretell the future, and save a nation and the surrounding nations from death.
This is what it is means to bring glory to God. You don’t have to tell someone who belong to God. They will know by your actions. Are you serving mankind or throwing them in a hell you don’t own? Are you loving others or telling them you got yours, they have to get theirs? Are you slacking at work or trying to preach to your coworkers on company time? Are you inviting your coworkers to your home for a meal so you can minister to them there?
If you never spoke a word, would anyone know you belong to the God, who is in heaven?
Three Lessons from Joseph’s Life
Here are another three lessons from Joseph’s life that could benefit us. The first three are in listed in Continue to Live, While People Push You to Your Destiny.
1. Don’t be angry when people forget what you did for them.
God may be trying to work something out of you when this happens. He may be trying to tell you to trust Him fully, instead of relying on someone else to help you. It may be a timing issue. It may be a heart issue.
Whatever it is you have to look at your life as if God is in control of everything that concerns you because He is. He knows when people do you right and wrong. He has a plan for your life, and you have to trust He knows what He is doing. I know it is hard sometimes. That’s when we go to Him and ask Him to strengthen our resolve to follow Him no matter what.
2. Approach the King in proper attire.
Joseph didn’t go straight from a dirty prison to being in the presence of the King of Egypt. He had to get cleaned up before he could approach Pharoah. We serve the King of kings. How much more should we be mindful of how we approach Him?
Are our attitudes geared towards His heart? Or do we have a long list of what we want from Him? Are we seeking His face? Or are we seeking His ability to do things for us? Do we speak to Him regularly? Or once in a blue moon?
Are we asking Him to fix someone else instead of ourselves? Do we blame someone else for our problems? Or are we taking responsibility for our part in the situation?
We must come to Him desiring to get to know Him better, desiring to feel His heart in a matter, desiring to grow, even if it hurts.
How do you approach the King of kings?
3. Give God the Glory
In all your ways acknowledge it is He alone who can do all things. When you lay hands on someone it’s not you healing them, it’s God. You’re not a healer. He is. When you interpret dreams it’s only because He is giving you the information. When you cast out a demon you are definitely not doing it. They only obey the authority of God. It’s not your ministry. It’s His ministry. It’s not about making your name great. It’s about making His name great.
Stop stealing God’s glory!
God Will Have His Way
When you are called and chosen by God, He will have his way in your life. He will remove people who are hindering you. He’ll bring people into your life to connect you to the right people. He will allow you to go through testing to help you grow. He will do whatever it takes to bring you to your destiny.
You just have to do what Joseph did. He worked hard in every circumstance he was in, whether it was the Governor’s house, the prison, or Pharoah’s house. He was obedient to his father, his employer, and his jailer. He never let anyone else cause him to sin against his God or his integrity. Most importantly, he never took God’s glory. He made sure everyone knew it was God who could do all things.
What’s your greatest lesson you’ve learned from Joseph’s life? Share it with us in the comments below.
Don’t despise the journey, you’ll get there.
You can’t let people stop you from being great.
All they are doing is starting your process. Or they are pushing you closer to your destiny.
No one ever takes a fifth grader and tells her to teach the twelfth graders. You don’t go from not knowing how to read to teaching others how to read unless you went through the process of learning how to read.
Joseph was no different. He had to go through the process to be able to function properly in the space God was placing him.