A Blessing for Blessing
This devotional is part of a series through the story of Joseph. You can read the whole series here.
Joseph, the precocious young dreamer of dreams, had spent the last fifteen years of his life knocked back on his heels. In response to the boy wonder’s claims that his entire family would bow down and worship him, his brothers said, Enough of that! Let’s see what sort of dreams he dreams at the bottom of a well or better yet, in the dungeon of his slave master.
As it turns out, we are not told anything more about Joseph’s dreams. His first was his last, so far as Scripture is concerned. Instead, we are told about the dream of a cupbearer, a baker, and even those of Pharaoh himself. The boy who entered redemptive history telling of himself had his focus turned outwards by a loving God. The dream interpreter became a gift who blessed the nations around him. And the role he would play in the story of God’s redemption could not have been imagined.
Of course, Joseph did not choose this change. It was brought upon him. From favorite among his brothers to wrongfully imprisoned, this son of Jacob learned to receive what God brought to him. Stewardship was the result of all he underwent. Favor in the eyes of Pharaoh and power over the people were his reward from the Egyptians. Not because he sought them out specifically, but because he accepted what God gave him. Second in command in all the land.
He went throughout all of Egypt during the seven years of plenty. Every city, town, and village he visited he hoped to bless. Though not immediately. Their blessing would come several years in the future when famine rolled through the land.
During this time Joseph was blessed with a wife and two sons. The first son was named Manasseh meaning “God has made me forget all my hardship and all my father’s house” and the second son was named Ephraim meaning “God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction.” Names that are both tinged with sorrow, yet grateful for the blessed faithfulness of God.
Through his faithful stewardship, the land of Egypt was prepared when the years of famine arrived. As the dire conditions spread beyond the border of Egypt and the world grew needy, a Hebrew in Pharaoh’s court helped them survive. God had set the stage for a dramatic encounter between Joseph and his brothers.
Although different in degree and kind, God has given us gifts to steward so as to be a blessing and glorify him. As sinners we require sanctification to be the stewards our Heavenly Father wants us to be. Be encouraged that God is always working with the end in mind. For all things work together for the good of those who love him.
Will Stockdale is a Ministry Associate and cohost of The Will & Rob Show.