Dreams And Visions
"Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it!” 1 Thessalonians 5:24
A couple of months ago while studying I watched “Joseph: King of Dreams” on Netflix. If you know me, you know that I love watching movies and believe that a good movie always has a lesson in it that we can learn from. This movie opened the door for me to study Joseph’s story in Genesis. I was encourage so much during my study and I now feel led to share it with you, especially since in about 27 days we will be entering the new year.
In Genesis the 37th chapter we meet a seventeen-year-old young man named Joseph. “Jacob loved Joseph more than any of his other children because Joseph had been born to him in his old age” (vs. 3). Here is where we begin to see the favor that God had on Joseph’s life. Because of this favor, Joseph was given a beautiful robe; a robe that set him apart from his other brothers. This robe/favor not only set him apart, but also caused his brothers to hate him. Have you ever been hated for a dream? Maybe not hated per se, but disliked, discouraged, ridiculed, called crazy, lost friends…..all because you chose to dream and when I say dream, I mean dream big! As a blood bought born again believer it is important that you realize that the Kingdom of God resides in YOU! You have been marked. You are set apart. You are His! Always remember that royalty is your identity. Servanthood is your assignment. And intimacy with God is your life source!
Starting in verse 5 we see that Joseph begins to dream:
“One night Joseph had a dream, and when he told his brothers about it, they hated him more than ever. “Listen to this dream,” he said. “We were out in the field, tying up bundles of grain. Suddenly my bundle stood up, and your bundles all gathered around and bowed low before mine!” His brothers responded, “So you think you will be our king, do you? Do you actually think you will reign over us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dreams and the way he talked about them. Soon Joseph had another dream, and again he told his brothers about it. “Listen, I have had another dream,” he said. “The sun, moon, and eleven stars bowed low before me!” This time he told the dream to his father as well as to his brothers, but his father scolded him. “What kind of dream is that?” he asked. “Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow to the ground before you?” But while his brothers were jealous of Joseph, his father wondered what the dreams meant.”
Verse 18 then says:
“When Joseph’s brothers saw him coming, they recognized him in the distance. As he approached, they made plans to kill him. “Here comes the dreamer!” they said.”
Joseph dreams seemed bizarre, extraordinary, and in his brother’s eyes down right impossible! Joseph’s dreams disgusted and insulted them; it caused them to hate him. And although his father scolded him for his dream; his father still wondered what the dreams that Joseph was having meant. You’ve been here. Some people probably roll their eyes every time they see you coming, “What did the Lord tell her to do this time?" Then you have others that question your dream, maybe causing you to second-guess some things, but are secretly wondering, “What does all of this mean?” You also have some dream killers. They set out to kill your dream, kill your confidence, kill your faith….but the devil is a liar! Men never intimidate a man who is intimate with God. They can plot, scheme, plan, calculate, but at the end of the day God’s power to restore is stronger than Satan’s power to destroy!
As we continue reading we see that Joseph’s brothers planned to kill him, but eventually decided to sell him to the Ishmaelite traders. He was then later sold to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh. Let’s stop here: It is important that you keep quiet when God is revealing things to you about your future. Joseph shared his dreams prematurely, and because of this was sold to a "walk by sight" people. Sometimes we get excited about the great things that God is revealing to us that we share it with the wrong people. Ishmael, as we know was birthed out of the flesh; created because walking by faith “seemed” impossible! Once God has revealed something to you, stand in faith waiting for the manifestation of your Isaac instead of rushing ahead and creating an Ishmael. Once again, shhhhhh! Ishmaelites are every where. How ironic was it that Joseph, the dreamer, was sold to these people. The enemy will try his best to discourage you and to get you to quit....what better way to do so then to surround you with Ishmaelites. Those who don't believe in miracles, those who don't walk by faith, those who believe that in order to be successful, you have to know and kiss up to certain people or take the pen out of God's hands, manipulating and coming up with a "good" idea instead of standing in faith, waiting for the manifestation of a "God idea." If you are dreamer….it’s time you start praying, asking God to reveal the hearts of those around you. It's also time that you become more spirit-led when it comes to who you share with! Beware of Ishmaelites!
Now, Joseph was sold, falsely accused, and thrown in jail. I'm sure his brothers thought that they had gotten rid of him, but praise God that the gates of hell cannot prevail against a blood bought believer because Love has already won the battle! I am sure that Joseph questioned the calling that God had put on his life. I am sure that Joseph had some “pity parties.” I am sure that Joseph wanted to completely give up because of the seemingly impossible situation he was in. I am sure he said:
“God, this is not how I thought it would go.”
“God, You said…..”
“God, You are the one who gave me the dream!”
But after Joseph was finished feeling sorry for himself. I believe He began to worship and praise God right in the midst of a difficult situation! Our worship should not be confined to times and places; it should be the spirit of our lives! I believe Joseph experienced the presence of God in that jail! When you experience the presence of God you are no longer the victim; you are the VICTOR!! When you experience the presence of God, your walk will never be the same. When you experience the presence of God, it doesn’t matter to you what other people think, what your circumstance says, or how you “feel.” You begin to believe with all of your heart the report of the Lord! His report says I am the head and not the tail, above ONLY and not beneath, the lender and not the borrower. His report says I am healed, that I am royalty, that I am significant, and have a divine purpose that will show forth His glory in this world! It always amazes me what just one moment in the presence of God will do! It will change your perspective! Joseph had seemed to hit an impossible barrier, but this seemingly impossible barrier never bothered God. We may let them have quite an affect on us, but they don't ever bother God because nothing is impossible for Him! And if you're a child of God, the power of God lives inside of you, so impossible barriers shouldn't bother you either! Any time you come up against what seems like an impossible barrier, you should immediately recognize it as an opportunity for the manifestation of God's glory to show up and bring you victory! And no matter what it feels like, remember that we don't walk by feelings or by sight. We walk by what we believe. God is never defeated; since He is our source we are guaranteed victory too! So, don't quit! Keep believing God! He can make the impossible possible!
As we continue to read in Genesis 39:21-22 we see that Joseph was favored while he was in prison! God is the only one who can make a valley of trouble a door of hope! He always has a plan motion that is better than our own.
“Before long, the warden put Joseph in charge of all the other prisoners and over everything that happened in the prison. The warden had no more worries, because Joseph took care of everything. The Lord was with him and caused everything he did to succeed.”
God even used Joseph to interpret two dreams while in prison! Friend, nothing can stop the favor of the Lord!
Two full years later, Joseph was promoted after being hated, lied on, and imprisoned. Friend, know that when God puts a desire in your heart and plants a dream in you…….He will fulfill it! Pharaoh had a dream and God used Joseph to interpret it! Know that you are never to “far down” for God to raise you up and use you! God takes what this world calls foolish and puts their life on blast to bring Him glory! The very person you brush off as unimportant could be your boss or this generation’s next minister! The same dreams Joseph had years ago came to past. His brothers needed grain and lo and behold, Egypt was the place where the grain was and guess who was in Egypt and placed over this operation? You guessed it……JOSEPH! Not only did God put Joseph in a position to provide for his brothers and many other people, but they ended up bowing to him like Joseph had dreamt many years ago. Let’s stop here: It is important to note that Joseph was angry when his brothers came asking for grain. Unbeknownst to them, they were basically confirming what Joseph had dreamt many years ago. If you’ve read this story, you know that Joseph had them do all kinds of things to "get back at them," but he soon repented, revealed himself to them, and apologized. I brought this up to say, people may not see “it” now, but they will one day! You preach a sermon as you live your life! Don’t get so caught up in trying to prove a point or getting back that you miss the bigger picture! God blesses you so that you can be a blessing! He uses you to bring others to Him! When He raises you up, it’s to inspire, encourage, and to point others to Him….not for you to punish them! Stay humble and rest in the peace of God!
Now once Joseph apologized, his brothers did the same. I love Joseph’s response in Genesis 50:19-21
“But Joseph replied, “Don’t be afraid of me. Am I God, that I can punish you? You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. No, don’t be afraid. I will continue to take care of you and your children.” So he reassured them by speaking kindly to them.”
Joseph realized that this thing was bigger then him! Friend, once you take your eyes off of you and your feelings…..you will realize your true purpose! Like Joseph, you may have discouraging moments, but Corrie Ten Boom once said, “Faith sees the invisible. Believes the unbelievable. And receives the impossible!” When we consider the ways that God has provided in the past it helps us to trust Him in the present! What has God brought you through in the past? Think on these things, and choose to trust Him to bring you through all you face today and tomorrow. Our God is faithful! Another favorite scripture of mine is 1 Thessalonians 5:24 which says, "Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it!” It’s time you rest in the promises of God and trust God with a fresh brewed faith! He will be your strength, sustainer, and your hiding place so you can run and not grow weary, walk and not be faint! Fill up our faith cup right now and dream on dreamer! Don't let people or circumstances modify the vision God has given YOU! God is completely dependable. If he said it, he'll do it!