He said to them, “Please listen to [the details of] this dream which I have dreamed; we [brothers] were binding sheaves [of grain stalks] in the field, and lo, my sheaf [suddenly] got up and stood upright and remained standing; and behold, your sheaves stood all around my sheaf and bowed down [in respect].” His brothers said to him, “Are you actually going to reign over us? Are you really going to rule and govern us as your subjects?” So they hated him even more for [telling them about] his dreams and for his [arrogant] words. But Joseph dreamed still another dream, and told it to his brothers [as well]. He said, “See here, I have again dreamed a dream, and lo, [this time I saw] eleven stars and the sun and the moon bowed down [in respect] to me!” He told it to his father as well as to his brothers; but his father rebuked him and said to him [in disbelief], “What is [the meaning of] this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers actually come to bow down to the ground [in respect] before you?” Genesis 37:6-9 AMP
From the title, telling other people about our dreams is a big and common mistake we make. God is omniscient meaning He is all knowing, the devil is not. So telling people your God given dreams especially those that have demonstrated to be against you like Joseph brothers is not wise. In essence it is like announcing to the enemy your dreams, if you do so expect serious attacks from him attempting to abort them. We should ask God for wisdom on what steps we should take next after having our dreams.
When God gives us a dream, I’ve learnt that He highlights the best parts of the dream and not the purpose of it to make us excited about it. This is because most of time we are immature and if He’d revel the purpose we wouldn’t be so happy and excited to pursue it. Take for example the dream Joseph had. God in the first dream highlighted the part where his brothers would bow down to him. In the second dream, God highlighted the part where his entire family including his parents would bow down to him.
These dreams excited Joseph no wonder he shared them with his family. But consider this for a moment, we all know how the story progresses, how Joseph becomes second to pharaoh and how he ended up saving the lives of many during several years of severe drought. But why didn’t God give him a dream highlighting the purpose of His life? Why didn’t He show him instead that he would grow in intimacy with Him as a result be a great interpreter of dreams and a good steward which would result in saving the lives of many people including his own family.
I think no teenager would be excited to pursue such a purpose of stewardship, it sounds boring compared to possessing such power and authority that your entire family bows down before you. Now that sounds exciting to a seventeen-year-old to the extent that he gives an announcement to everyone in his family. But why only highlight the good parts and not the entire journey?
God does this to get us excited about our future, no He is not a liar. He is not a man that He should lie but because we are immature and responsibility is not appealing to us, He highlights the part of the dream, that we would intrigue the desire and motivation of our hearts be it power, fame or riches in order to make us excited about our future. However, by the time we achieve this dream, we would have outgrown our childish ways and become responsible stewards increasing all that we possess to the glory of the Lord.
The story goes on to reveal the reactions of both his brothers and his father after listening to his dream, watch this.
Joseph’s brothers were envious and jealous of him, but his father kept the words [of Joseph] in mind [wondering about their meaning] Genesis 37:11 (AMP)
Could it be that Joseph was meant to share his dream but he fail to discern who to share it with and who not to. Joseph had an amazing relationship with his father, he was Israel’s most beloved son and he had a multi-coloured tunic to prove it. Meanwhile he was already hated by his brothers and they could not [find it within themselves to] speak to him on friendly terms (see Genesis 37:4). Joseph if he was so compelled to share his dream, it would be logic that he shared it with his father alone, knowing the content of the dream and his current relationship with his brothers.
But instead, he told his brothers his dreams. He knew the content of his dreams involved his brothers- (the same ones who hated him and couldn’t speak on friendly terms to him) bowing down to him, not once but twice and he boldly told them! Joseph had pride and the Lord used the dream to test him, revealing he had a problem with pride. God used the dream He gave Joseph to purge or get rid of impurities such as pride from his character.
God’s promise to Joseph purged his character until it was time for his dreams to come true. Psalm 105:19 (TPT)
In Matthew 20:20 James and John’s mother approach Jesus to request Him to make the decree that James and John, will rule with you in your kingdom one sitting on your right hand, one on your left. Let see Jesus’ reply.
“You don’t know what you are asking.” Then, looking in the eyes of Jacob and John, Jesus said, “Are you prepared to drink from the cup of suffering that I am about to drink? And are you able to endure the baptism into death that I am about to endure?”…“You will indeed drink the cup of my suffering and be immersed into my death,” Jesus told them. “But to be the ones who sit at the place of highest honor is not mine to decide. My Father is the one who chooses them and prepares them.”
We can certainly draw two things from this. First for every position attained their is a price to pay. Well, it is quite evident Joseph indeed paid a very high price to have all the power and authority, to become second in command to Pharaoh. His brothers sold him as a slave, he was falsely accused of rape and imprisoned. The bible records his suffering in Psalm 105:18…His feet they hurt with shackles; He was put in chains of iron. Joseph missed out on the relationship he had with his father and his younger brother Benjamin.
Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, today is seated at the right hand of God, the Father. He is sited in heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion [whether angelic or human], and [far above] every name that is named [above every title that can be conferred], not only in this age and world but also in the one to come. And God put all things [in every realm] in subjection under Christ’s feet, and appointed Him as [supreme and authoritative] head over all things in the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills and completes all things in all [believers] see Ephesians 1:21-23(AMP)
Before Jesus Christ could enjoy any of this, He just like Joseph, first paid the prize. Hebrews 12:2 (TPT) captures this elegantly:
… His example is this: Because his (Jesus) heart was focused on the joy of knowing that you would be his, he endured the agony of the cross and conquered its humiliation, and now sits exalted at the right hand of the throne of God!
The dream for Christ, was that we the church would be His. What appealed to His heart was companionship with us, an everlasting union to His bride. That was he desire and He paid for it with His own life. While for the majority of us, just like seventeen year old Joseph, wealth, riches, fame and power are the motivation of our dreams, our Beloved Saviour’s heart desire and motivation was and is to be with us. How great is His love for us, such excellence in His purity of heart. What a Saviour!! What a Lord!!! Don’t you love Him already???
The second point is that God, the Father chooses a place for everyone and He in turns prepares the person for the place. In God’s plan, every human being born has a place set aside. Each person is born to meet a need in creation. Joseph places was to save the lives of many and God was preparing him for the place He predestined for him through the dream. God was going to use the dream to purge his character.
Today be encouraged that God had predestined a place specifically just for you, before you were born. Remember Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,’ says the Lord, ‘plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster to give you a future and a hope. You have a purpose which will result in benefiting others. It is all up to you to discover it and be sure that God is preparing you, for the place He has for you.
• Do not announce your dream to people. Instead ask God for wisdom on how to go about what He has revealed to you.
• Your dream is exciting and amazing but it has a purpose which is to benefit others.
• God will use the dream He gave you to purge or perfect your character, so that you can be ready for it to come through.
• For every position attained their is a price to pay.
• Christ Jesus heart desire and motivation was and is to be with us.
• God, the Father chooses a place for everyone and He in turns prepares the person for the place.