Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Joseph - A Child of Vision

Joseph viewed the circumstances of life in the proper perspective, realizing that what God had promised him in his visions would come to pass. 

Living Your Dreams

Dreams are mysterious mental commotions that flutter through our brains and sometimes disturb our sleep. Occasionally, their residue lingers into our waking hours. Dreams can be quite dramatic and bring deep emotional feelings. We are helpless as our dreams take us to strange and unseemly places. They are without normal boundaries and can either take us to hights of grandeur or to the depths of despair. 

Some believe dreams are expressions of the dreamer's deepest fears and desires. It is from this idea that some individuals use the dream metaphor to refer to personal vision of achievement. The ability to envision our future is an ability that separates humans from animals. Although life is unpredictable, we are able to plan and plot our future. God dreams and envisions the future as well. The prophets of the Bible manifest God's vision of the future. His dreams are not "pipe dreams," but they become reality.

God has given us the ability to plan and envision. So let's dream about lofty attainments and then endeavor to achieve them. The dream comes first and then reality. Just don't sleep too long.

By: Gary Erickson

Words such as dream and visions resonate with Spirit-filled believers. After all, on the Day of Pentecost, Peter took his text from Joel 2:28. "And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophecy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams" (Acts 2:17).

Surely Joel's message does not mean visions and prophecy come only to the young and dreaming is relegated to the old. Instead, it means that the lives of those upon whom the spirit is poured are characterized by the miraculous. They prophecy, uttering words given to them by the Holy Spirit. They see divinely inspired visions. They dream dreams that come from God. (See Acts 16:19-10, 18:9 in which the word translated "vision" can refer to something seen in one's sleep.)

"And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more. And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed: For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf. And his brethren said to him, Shalt thou indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have dominion over us? And they hated him yet the more for his dreams, and for his words. And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me. And he told it to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth? And his brethren envied him; but his father observed the saying" (Genesis 37:5-11).

What God has promised will come to pass, no matter how impossible it may seem.

Joseph knew his God-given dreams would be fulfilled only if he remained FAITHFUL.

His father had mixed feelings about Joseph's dreams, but his half-brothers viewed him as a downright arrogant upstart. However, had Joseph's dreams been simply expressions of personal ambition, the end of the story would have revealed an overdeveloped ego. But to the contrary, the outcome revealed Josephs' humility.
Josephs dream did not include: the pit, going into prison or Potiphar's wife's lewd infatuation for her husband's handsome overseer.

How easy it would have been for Joesph to set aside his dreams for a moment of pleasure! But he knew his God-given dreams would be fulfilled only if he remained faithful.

Rather than succumb to bitterness and homelessness, Joseph showed himself such a model and trustworthy prisoner that the keeper released him from the chains and gave him the oversight of the prison. (See Genesis 39).

What an opportunity Joesph had to say, "I told you so!" How easy it would have been for him to treat his brothers the way they had treated him. But he had a dream, and in that dream was his destiny. Rather than squandering his dream by seeking vengeance, Joesph viewed even his brothers abuse as a vehicle for God to bring His purposes to pass. 

If a dream is from God, it will come to pass. Dreams never die unless we abandon them.

When we view life from God's perspective, even suffering takes on divine significance. Joesph had a glorious dream, but on the way to fulfillment, it took him through rejection, betrayal, false accusation, and imprisonment. If we were able to view Joseph's circumstances at any point along with painful path, we would be tempted to think Joesph's dream was merely a figment of his own imagination or perhaps a results of his own arrogant ambition.

But the validity of one's dreams cannot be determined by the attempts of other people to prevent them from being fulfilled. If a dream is from God, it will come to pass. Dreams never die unless we abandon them.

By: Jocelyn Jones
Reference: Celebration Series, Summer 2012