A DIFFERENT DESTINY
Heavenly Father, I am grateful for the potential and privileges of today. Infuse me with wisdom so that I may make wise decisions for each hour.
Read Genesis 37:1–11
37 Jacob lived in the land where his father had stayed, the land of Canaan.
2 This is the account of Jacob’s family line.
Joseph, a young man of seventeen, was tending the flocks with his brothers, the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives, and he brought their father a bad report about them.
3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than any of his other sons, because he had been born to him in his old age; and he made an ornate[a] robe for him. 4 When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.
5 Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more. 6 He said to them, “Listen to this dream I had: 7 We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.”
8 His brothers said to him, “Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said.
9 Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”
10 When he told his father as well as his brothers, his father rebuked him and said, “What is this dream you had? Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow down to the ground before you?” 11 His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind.
- Genesis 37:3 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain; also in verses 23 and 32.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectHow is your life going at the moment? Come into the presence of God for a restored perspective (see Psalm 73:17).
One of the hardest things to come to terms with is that people less deserving than us (so we think) are more successful. The book of Genesis is full of such outcomes. Younger sons are more favored than rightful heirs: Abel is favored over Cain, Jacob over Esau, and Joseph over his older brothers. This is even more galling when the ‘successful’ individual is a cheat (as in the case of Jacob), or insensitive and arrogant (as in the case of the young Joseph).
This introduction to Joseph does not paint him in a favorable light. And yet, as the story unfolds, his dreams turn out to be accurate: Joseph’s brothers do bow down before him (50:18) as his dreams predicted.
Jacob (11; see Mary in Luke 2:51) does not discount the call of God through Joseph’s dreams. God insists on the right to choose how to use people (Romans 9:19–21). Moreover, in the story of God, a small nation of shepherds turns out to be more important than mighty Egypt.
What are your dreams? Have you committed those to Christ? Take time now to seek God’s direction for your life.
Lord, I am reminded in today’s passage that You use ordinary, sinful, and broken people to accomplish Your will. Use me I pray, even if it is despite who I am.
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