Joseph is one of my favorite Biblical characters. He is such a great example of what it means to trust God though times and circumstances may be trying. I believe there are three key lessons we can about God from Joseph that will help us in our daily living.
I. God has a plan for your life. In Genesis 37:5-11, God gave Joseph an amazing dream that revealed a key aspect of his destiny. Unfortunately, as a young man, he did not have the maturity to keep the dream to himself and he offended his brothers.
God wants to work His will in your life. Here are some points to consider.
v Pray and ask God what his plan for your life is—start at an early age. Here are some helpful passages to consider—Acts 22:10; Psalm 31:3,5; 32:8.
v Don’t be consumed with your own plan. Your dreams and ambitions may not fit God’s will and purpose.
v Don’t worry what others think. Joseph’s family did not care for his dream. Many people may criticize or oppose what you believe God is calling you to do or be. Be faithful to your calling at all costs. Remember Who your Master is!
While following God’s plan you can count on facing adversity and temptations. Joseph was thrown into a pit and sold into slavery. He languished in prison for years after his employer’s wife tried to seduce him and then falsely accused him of attacking her. When you experience trouble, ask God what He wants you to learn from it. Don’t be so quick to pray for healing—it may be that God has a lesson for you in suffering. Trust that He will lead you through the dark valleys and don’t worry about what others think. Job’s friends thought he was a loser. They had no clue that God’s permissive will was behind his misfortunes. If you are tempted, ask God for the strength to resist and for His deliverance. Run from evil and recognize that some temptations may come from our own tendency to insert our will in place of God’s plan.
II. God’s plan may not be fully understood. Joseph had no idea for years what God was doing in his life. If your life seems purposeless and confusing, ask the Lord to help you be faithful in the little things. If He can use you in the prison, He can use you in the palace. When circumstances or people turn against you don’t leave room for bitterness or seek revenge (Romans 12:17-19). Joseph could easily have killed or ruined the lives of his evil brothers. Instead he forgave them. How often we miss God’s plan because we enforce our own misguided will. Even worse, we miss God because we were more in love with our reputation or “success.”
III. God’s plan brings reward when you follow His will and not your own. In Gen. 45:4-8 and 50:19,20 Joseph shares his realization that it was God’s intention all along to bring him to Egypt so that he might rescue his family from famine. Joseph was faithful to God and upright in his conduct and character so his Father used him to bring blessing. God wants to bless you and He wants to use you to bring blessing. You can opt to live like Joseph’s older brothers—selfish and sorely acquainted with their Maker. Or, you can be sensitive and discerning to His voice and will, eager to please Him and obedient for His glory. Something to think about . . . in reveration.
The call of God is the expression of God’s nature, not of our nature . . . The call of God is not the echo of my nature; my affinities and personal temperament are not considered. As long as I consider my personal temperament and think about what I am fitted for, I shall never hear the call of God . . . The majority of us have no ear for anything but ourselves, we cannot hear a thing God says. To be brought into the zone of the call of God is to be profoundly altered.—Oswald Chambers in My Utmost For His Highest
©2005 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)