God is in management (half four of seven)
"Now Joseph had a dream and when he told his brothers they hated him even more. He said to them: Hear this dream I dreamed: Behold, we tied sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf rose and stood upright. And behold, your sheaves gathered around it and bowed to my sheaf. "His brothers said to him:" Are you really supposed to rule over us? Or should you actually rule over us? "So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words."
Genesis 37: 5-8
Read by Alistair Begg
Joseph was known for his dreams – and his dreams were anything but ordinary! When he was dreaming, it became clear that God was involved, that his dreams were a sign of what God would do.
Joseph's dreams indicated that he was the object of God's special favor, the servant of his divine purpose. These truths only increased his brothers' hatred. Eventually, even his father Jacob's affection cooled off.1 Joseph became, so to speak, an isolated young man with whom no one could speak or identify.
God has control over the trauma, hostility, and difficulties we face, as well as control over the fulfillment of Joseph's dreams.
We could have expected Joseph to withdraw, avoid the pain in his life, and hide from a world that hated him – a world that was alien to him, full of discord and broken relationships. But that wasn't his answer! Instead, we find that he remained stable and focused and had a clear vision for the future.
Joseph's resilience is remarkable. How do we explain such a reaction in the life of a seventeen year old?
At the heart of Joseph's being was the awareness that God, who was his heavenly Father, had control over his life as a precaution. According to the Westminster Shorter Catechism, providence is the act of God's grace and goodness, through which, in his wisdom and power, he preserves and governs all events of the life of his creatures.2 Through every dream in the midst of the chaos of life, Joseph realized that God ruled over everything .
As under Joseph's circumstances, ours too: God has control over the trauma, hostility, and difficulties we face, as well as the fulfillment of Joseph's dreams. If we cannot understand why we are objects of someone else's hate, we must remember that God who sits on his throne is interested in the affairs of our lives.
We cannot see God's plan by what is most convenient, acceptable, and rationally obvious. God's care is expressed not only in the usual, expected way, but also in surprising and unusual ways. Let us not see the dark and disappointing times as frustrating its purpose. Instead, let's learn every day to trust him more fully.