Joseph innocently shares his dreams with his brothers and his father. Both of his dreams highlight that one day his family will bow to him and be at his mercy. Through the visuals of sheaves of grain and heavenly bodies, God begins to drop hints of His great plans for this shepherd.
‘Ha Ha Ha’ is their laughing response and Joseph is mockingly referred to as “the dreamer” in Genesis 37:19. I can hear them roaring with laughter, “That’s a good one, Joey. Tell us another one.”
Their jealously becomes darker and more evil; “Come now, let’s kill him. Then we’ll see what comes of his dreams.” Genesis 37:20.
God-ordained dreams don’t die; even if the dreamer does. Joseph’s brothers don’t know Whom they are dealing with. They don’t kill Joseph but sell him as a slave for 20 shekels of silver. Now Joseph is on his way to Egypt.
If Joseph’s highs and lows in Egypt caused him to scratch his head and wonder if God had abandoned him and those now-hazy dreams, we don’t read of any. We don’t read about any wavering or questioning. We don’t read about Joseph chucking his faith during those dark days.
He suffers through false accusations and false imprisonment. “But God was with him” as we are reminded in Genesis 39:2 and 39:21.
The next dreams belong to Pharaoh’s officials and Pharaoh himself. Joseph interprets the good news for the cupbearer (you will be restored to your position) and the bad news for the baker (you will die). Don’t shoot the messenger.
When Joseph is brought in from his prison cell to interpret Pharaoh’s dreams, Joseph shows his amazing, unwavering faith. No bitterness. No “it’s about time, God”. No “You forgot about me, now I will forget about You”. Nope. Joseph gives credit where credit is due. “I can’t, but God can.”
“I cannot do it, but God will give Pharaoh the answer he desires.” Genesis 41:16 NIV
Joseph’s dreams and their interpretations have caused him much pain and now much praise and admiration. Egypt and the surrounding lands will survive the famine. Joseph is reunited with his family and offers forgiveness. Forgiveness that resonates of “I cannot, but God can.”
Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work in us. Ephesians 3:20 NIV
Photo credit: Sarah Bessey