Life of Joseph – Part 25 – Forgetting the Past

I’m sure every one reading this has lived through injustices in their life. It’s really not a question of IF unjust things will happen to you. The question is how often. But an even more important question than that is how will you handle them.

Some injustices hurt us so deeply that our life will never be the same. Joseph lived through some of those. And they changed his life in major ways.

But thankfully God doesn’t limit His blessings in our lives to only when our life is perfect, or if we’re still working from what we think is Plan A, or based on whether or not we’ve responded correctly to injustices thrown at us.

Today we see how God blessed Joseph . . . right where he was. Here’s today’s passage.

Genesis 41:50-52 / Amplified Bible (AMP)

50 Now to Joseph were born two sons before the years of famine came, whom Asenath daughter of Potiphera, the priest of On, bore to him.

51 And Joseph called the firstborn Manasseh [making to forget], For God, said he, has made me forget all my toil and hardship and all my father’s house.

52 And the second he called Ephraim [to be fruitful], For [he said] God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.



– God sometimes sends blessings that help us forget some of the injustices done to us in the past.

– God’s blessings can help us in our grieving process.

– Our fruitfulness is not dependent on our location or our circumstances. God can and will use us right where we are.

Application Questions:

– What blessings has God given me that have helped me forget past injustices?

– Which of God’s blessings have helped me deal with my grief?

– When and how has God used me in a location or circumstance that I didn’t consider to be ideal?

Life of Joseph – Part 24 – Starting a New Job

Whenever I start a new job, I feel like a fish out of water for the first few weeks. Maybe it’s just me, but it takes a while to get comfortable at a new desk, in a new workspace, in a new office environment. Plus it’s never the exact same job duties I was accustomed to in my previous position, so there’s always a learning curve involved. And, of course, there’s learning how to navigate the office terrain . . . like people, personalities, pet peeves, and power struggles.

Based on my personality, it would be easy for me to gradually work up to fulfilling my new duties. I would be more comfortable taking my time learning the new job and the new terrain and postponing the responsibilities now on my shoulders.

But that’s not how Joseph handled it. And I think he is a great example of how to start out in a new job.

Here’s what today’s section says:

Genesis 41:46-49 / Amplified Bible (AMP)

46 Joseph [who had been in Egypt thirteen years] was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt. Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh and went [about his duties] through all the land of Egypt.

47 In the seven abundant years the earth brought forth by handfuls [for each seed planted].

48 And he gathered up all the [surplus] food of the seven [good] years in the land of Egypt and stored up the food in the cities; he stored away in each city the food from the fields around it.

49 And Joseph gathered grain as the sand of the sea, very much, until he stopped counting, for it could not be measured.


Joseph didn’t waste any time. The second part of verse 46 says he left Pharaoh’s presence and went out and started doing his job.

Here are the truths I found:

– When you’re hired, promoted, or given new authority, start doing your new duties immediately and be visible in your areas of responsibility. Take responsibility for what you’re now responsible for.

– Like you’ve heard before . . . what God says will happen — happens! There were 7 years of abundance just like Pharaoh’s dreams predicted.

– You need to start carrying out your approved plan immediately.

– Profits and savings should remain in the areas where they are earned. I believe profit-sharing at different levels for all employees will build a much more profitable company than giving all of the profits to the top level executives.

– Even when you’ve fulfilled your goals (or made more than you expected), keep following your plan.

Application Questions:

– What are some drawbacks/outcomes if you don’t start fulfilling your responsibilities immediately?

– When have I been surprised when God did what He said He would do? Why was I surprised?

– What can happen in an organization when everyone works hard to make a profit but not everyone gets to enjoy the fruits of their labor?

– When has the job I signed up for ended up being bigger than I imagined? What was the outcome?

Life of Joseph – Part 23 – 30 Years in the Making!

Today we’re focusing on one part of one verse . . . because I believe there’s something extremely important in this one sentence. Something that applies to every one of us.

It’s something I’m living through right now. I’ve lived through it in the past. And if I live long enough, I’m sure I’ll live through it again!

Here’s the sentence I want to talk about today.

Genesis 41:46A / Amplified Bible (AMP)

46 Joseph [who had been in Egypt thirteen years] was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt.


I’m sure you remember Joseph’s dreams . . . the ones he had while he was still living at home in his father’s house. The ones about his brothers and parents bowing down to him. The dreams that almost got him killed … and did get him sold into slavery and transported to Egypt.

It’s now been 13 years since Joseph last saw his Dad and brothers. I’m sure it’s been 13 looooong years. I can’t even imagine.

And I bet there have been times during those years in Egypt that Joseph wondered if maybe God had changed His mind. If maybe his brothers had sabotaged the dreams God had given him. If possibly his own pride about his dreams, pride that almost got him killed, had prevented his dreams from coming to fruition.

I just have to believe that Joseph went through times of doubt. I know I would have.

I still do today.

But I think one thing we can learn from Joseph’s life is that when God puts destiny dreams in our heart, they WILL eventually happen. And we can look to Joseph’s life for encouragement during our times of doubt.

I believe there are two reasons it took so long for Joseph to finally be standing before Pharaoh.

One is that the “time” wasn’t right until now.

Remember in the New Testament when it talks about Jesus’s arrival on planet Earth? It talks about “when the fullness of time had come.” I think that’s one reason Joseph hadn’t been promoted yet. The timing – in the big scheme of things – just wasn’t right until now. The time to take his position, to play his part, to fulfill his role is just now arriving. And he’s getting in place at just the right moment.

But I think there’s another aspect we can think about. I think the second reason it took so long was that Joseph himself wasn’t ready until now.

He wasn’t old enough, he wasn’t mature enough, he hadn’t lived through enough experiences to be prepared to take on the responsibility that would be required of him.

God may give us destiny dreams in our heart YEARS before they come to pass. Not because He wants to frustrate us, but because He wants to prepare us. And He wants us to know what He’s preparing us for . . . so we can understand the process a little.

One problem I have is that I get impatient and forget about the destiny dream and start settling for something less. Something more easily – and quickly – attained! Something I can feel good about NOW!

Something else that I believe Joseph needed to experience before God allowed him to be promoted isn’t really stated in the scripture. It’s implied. And this is strictly my belief. You can toss it if you don’t agree.

Remember two years earlier when Joseph interpreted the dreams for the baker and the cupbearer? He told the cupbearer that he would soon be restored to his position with Pharaoh. And then Joseph asked him for a favor.

Joseph asked the cupbearer to tell Pharaoh about him and to get him out of this place! He told the cupbearer that he had been unlawfully forced out of his homeland and that here in Egypt he had done nothing wrong and was in prison for no good reason.

What do you hear in those words?

I hear resentment, bitterness, unforgiveness. Self-focus. Maybe some immaturity.

But two years later, when God gives Pharaoh the dreams no one can interpret, and Joseph finally gets his audience with him, what kind of attitude does Joseph have?

Joseph seems very humble, giving God all the credit for the dream interpretations.

Joseph appears very secure. Very professional. Very mature.

He’s not whining about where he’s been and what he’s been through. He’s talking about a plan that can make a difference in the life of every Egyptian. A plan that will save thousands of lives. A plan he’s now capable of carrying out.

I think those last two years in prison were critical years in Joseph’s life. I don’t know what happened. Maybe he finally gave up his version of how his destiny was going to play out. Maybe he gave up on it totally and just surrendered to whatever it was God wanted to do with him.

I don’t know where you are today. Maybe you’re still in prison, whining about still being there and all the wrongs that have been done to you.

Or maybe you’re in those last two years and you’ve finally surrendered to whatever version of life God has for you. And now you’re waiting and preparing yourself.

Or maybe you’re being led into Pharaoh’s presence right now and your destiny dream is about to unfold before you.

Wherever you are, be encouraged today by Joseph’s story. And get ready to play your part in God’s wonderful plan of redemption.

Life of Joseph – Part 22 – A Legitimate Promotion

Today’s segment of Joseph’s life definitely gives us some principles to be followed in business life. But that doesn’t mean they’re not applicable in other relationships.

Today we get to see what kind of boss Pharaoh is. I don’t know your history, but I’ve worked for many bosses . . . and their styles were varied. I’ve worked for bosses who were critical and some who were encouraging. I’ve had supervisors who micro-managed and some who hardly managed. I’ve worked for people who were easy to talk to and some who were unapproachable.

I think Pharaoh’s style of supervision shown in today’s passage is excellent. He makes the decision (with input from his team) to give Joseph the responsibility of planning, executing, and following through with a program to save Egypt during the coming famine. He then makes sure everyone knows about Joseph’s position and authority and then he allows Joseph the privilege of actually being responsible for carrying out his job . . . without interference. What a great idea!

Here are today’s verses:

Genesis 41:41-45 / Amplified Bible (AMP)

41 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.

42 And Pharaoh took off his [signet] ring from his hand and put it on Joseph’s hand, and arrayed him in [official] vestments of fine linen and put a gold chain about his neck;

43 He made him to ride in the second chariot which he had, and [officials] cried before him, Bow the knee! And he set him over all the land of Egypt.

44 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without you shall no man lift up his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.

45 And Pharaoh called Joseph’s name Zaphenath-paneah and he gave him Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On, to be his wife. And Joseph made an [inspection] tour of all the land of Egypt.



I think today’s passage shows what should accompany a legitimate promotion:

1. An announcement from someone in authority.

2. A public signal of the transfer of authority. Joseph got Pharaoh’s signet ring. Based on your new position, you could get special garments (priest, judge, police, firefighter) or accessories (ID card, business cards, desk nameplate, parking spot, engagement/wedding ring, gun) signifying your new position.

3. A public display of your new position (organizational chart, a new office) and an announcement of the extent of authority transferred to you (interoffice memo, wedding ceremony, inauguration).

4. The boss clearly limiting his/her own authority in your area of expertise, allowing you to make the decisions you’re equipped and now authorized to make.

5. A title that matches your authority and expertise, benefits comparable to your position, and an opportunity to meet with your new constituents and determine their current status.

Application Questions:

– Who have I known who got a new title but no real authority? What were the outcomes?

– Who have I known who was given authority but no new title? What were the outcomes?

– What has been my personal experience with promotions?

– What are some modern day ceremonies that contain some of the elements in today’s reading?

– What are some problems caused by promotions that aren’t legitimate? What are some organizational outcomes that could occur when this continues to happen?