Here it is, 5:30a on a Saturday. I want to sleep, but I am wide awake. Whenever this happens to me, I have learned to pray; to talk to the Lord and to listen for what He woke me up to say to me. Honestly, the prayer often starts out asking Him to let me go back to sleep. It quickly turns to mind recitals of scripture that comfort me for my most present concerns and challenges. Then, He speaks.
This morning, at 5:30a, the story of Joseph kept coming to mind. I wondered how he felt when he was thrown in that pit by his own brothers. I thought about why he was in that pit. He was there because the Lord gave him a vision and he shared it with people he wanted to trust, his brothers. After he shared what the Lord allowed him to see, his brothers put their heads together and conspired to kill him. Kill him. For what? For expressing his dream and being a "dreamer". In today's world being a dreamer does not seem like a bad thing. Joseph's brothers, however, did not see his dreaming as inspired or promising. In fact, to them, his dreaming was all made up. By calling him "this dreamer," they were really calling him a troublemaker who only pretended to receive dreams when in reality he deceitfully fabricated his own visions of grandeur in order to put his brothers down and to elevate himself. Remember, the dream that he shared with them told of his future success and rule over them.
Let me go back to something: these brothers of Joseph conspired to kill Joseph because of his dream. Is that not startling? Does the Bible really say that a man's own brothers contracted to kill him just because he had a dream and told them about it? Yes. I've heard it explained that the pit could have been avoided if Joseph had just not told his brothers about his dream. It was his fault that his brothers hated him, because he should not have opened his mouth. That is not only preposterous, but the Bible does not teach that. Joseph is never condemned for sharing God's Word, except by his brothers.
You know the rest of the story: Joseph is not killed by his brothers, but he is thrown in the pit; he is rescued and sold into Egypt; he works for Potiphar whose wife has the hots for him because, by all accounts, Joseph is a looker; she tries to seduce him; he resists; he is wrongly accused and convicted of attempted rape; he is thrown into another pit - an Egyptian prison; there he interprets two dreams; his interpretations prove true; he is rescued again; he becomes governor of Egypt where his original dream comes true and he rescues his brothers from certain death.
Yes, this what I was thinking about at 5:30a on a Saturday morning.
What was Joseph thinking while he was in that pit? I keep thinking about that. He could not have known that he would be wrongly accused again and end up in another pit. He could not have known that in a few decades his own dream would come true. All he could have know was the details of his dream and the God who gave it to him. He could have tried and tried to convince his brothers that his dream was really a dream, but they would not have listened. Afterall, his brothers could not listen to him. They had determined that he was evil. Together they reinforced their false conclusion about him. They did not value the fact that he was their brother, even though Joseph did. They could not look beyond the surface of his dream to appreciate the substance of the dream. Did they know God? I am not sure. Maybe they did, but they did not allow Him to speak to their own hearts to truly hear what Joseph had revealed. They had ears, but they could not hear.
What was Joseph thinking while he was in the pit? This story makes me think about how God orchestrates the events of his children's' lives. Do you know what I mean? Have you had times when God has given you a dream, directive or vision that you have enthusiastically shared with your "brothers" (or "sisters") at home, church, school, work, or wherever, only to have those dreams misinterpreted? Have you been accused of making things up and being a troublemaker? Have you been thrown in the pit of alienation because if it? I'll bet, if you think back, you'll see that when that has happened to you, God rescued you. The rescues may not have always looked like a triumphant rescue, but over time, each of God's rescues always prove to be exactly that. I can remember one time when the pit I was in seemed too deep for the hand of God to reach me, but He impressed upon me these words, "I have always taken care of you, and I will take care of you this time." God essentially told me, "Don't worry; I got you!" I wonder if that was what God said to Joseph, "Don't worry; I got you!"
Through the pits of life and the patterns of being misunderstood and accused, conspired against and alienated, God continues to say to His dreamers, "Don't worry; I got you!" Do not get upset with your "brothers" when they cannot see what God has given you. Live though the times of being misunderstood. Remember that it will not last. Continue to trust the God who gave up you the dream. Be brave. And, as the Brand New Heavies sang years ago, "Dream on Dreamer."
Be Well, Be Blessed, Trust the Savior, Ms KimParis
© 2016 mskimparis.com/blog
First posted April 9, 2016