Last week Joseph shared the interpretation of a couple of very strange dreams Pharaoh had. The dreams warned of a future famine . . . one that could potentially devastate Egypt.
However, Joseph didn’t stop there. He went on to share with Pharaoh and his officials a detailed, 14-year plan for keeping Egypt from starving during the coming famine.
Pharaoh and his officials were impressed with the plan . . . and with Joseph. And after getting their approval, Pharaoh gave Joseph responsibility for running the program he just outlined. With all the authority Pharaoh handed Joseph, he was second-in-command over the entire country.
What a promotion!
Don’t miss the important question I ask below! I think it’s a great one to think about as we head into 2014.
Here are today’s verses:
Genesis 41:33-40 / Amplified Bible (AMP)
33 So now let Pharaoh seek out and provide a man discreet, understanding, proficient, and wise and set him over the land of Egypt [as governor].
34 Let Pharaoh do this; then let him select and appoint officers over the land, and take one-fifth [of the produce] of the [whole] land of Egypt in the seven plenteous years [year by year].
35 And let them gather all the food of these good years that are coming and lay up grain under the direction and authority of Pharaoh, and let them retain food [in fortified granaries] in the cities.
36 And that food shall be put in store for the country against the seven years of hunger and famine that are to come upon the land of Egypt, so that the land may not be ruined and cut off by the famine.
37 And the plan seemed good in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of all his servants.
38 And Pharaoh said to his servants, Can we find this man’s equal, a man in whom is the spirit of God?
39 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, Forasmuch as [your] God has shown you all this, there is nobody as intelligent and discreet and understanding and wise as you are.
40 You shall have charge over my house, and all my people shall be governed according to your word [with reverence, submission, and obedience]. Only in matters of the throne will I be greater than you are.
Here are the truths I found in today’s passage. For me they seem very business-oriented, probably because of where I am in life right now. However, they are also appropriate in other areas of life. I’d love to hear how they apply to you.
– Don’t go to your superior, partner, client or prospect with a problem unless you also bring a potential solution.
– Don’t allow the power and position of others in the room to intimidate you and keep you from being all you were created to be, from saying what you need to say, or from taking on a challenge when given an opportunity.
– Even when in a high position, a wise leader gets input from and listens to his/her team before making big decisions . . . especially decisions about hiring another team member.
– Giving God credit for your gifts and talents can increase the value your superiors see in you . . . and in turn can increase the authority they entrust to you . . . even if they’re not believers!
Where would Joseph have ended up that day . . .
– if he had only interpreted Pharaoh’s dream because he was too intimidated by Pharaoh and his officials to share the solution with them?
– if he had shared it but then said no, I’m not Egyptian or I don’t have as much experience as other people here . . . let one of them run the program?
– if he did not have the reputation of being a good slave in Potiphar’s house? a model prisoner in the dungeon? always eager to take on more responsibility?
– if he had not been preparing himself . . . even as a slave and prisoner . . . to fulfill the dreams that God had given him earlier in his life?
Personally, I think Joseph could easily have been sent immediately back to prison. However, because he came to Pharaoh cleaned up and looking more like an official than a prisoner, humbly told Pharaoh God’s interpretation of his dreams, shared a very workable plan to save Egypt from the coming famine, was not intimidated in a meeting full of men used to being in the presence of Pharaoh, and was willing to take responsibility for administering the solution he presented, Joseph never went back to prison. In fact, everything about Joseph’s lifestyle changed from that day forward.
So, how well prepared are we for what God has planned in 2014? We need to get ready! It’s going to be an exciting year.
– How often do I just share a problem without also bringing a potential solution?
– How often have I allowed the power and position of other people in the room to intimidate me? How much wisdom have I not shared? How often have I “played down” and not been all I could be? Why? What has it cost me?
– When could sharing my wisdom and discernment have helped someone make a better decision than they made?
– When have I made decisions without asking for input from those around me?
– When have I failed to give God credit? Why? What has it cost me?