“Please… please remember me after you get out. Tell Pharaoh about me—how I’ve done nothing wrong. Please!”
Joseph could see the assurance in the royal cupbearer’s eyes as he promised to help—promised to return the favor. And for the first few days after the man had been freed, Joseph had practically jumped up with excitement every time he heard someone coming down the damp stone steps of the dungeon. But those days turned to weeks, and then to months and years. It was clear that the cupbearer had forgotten him.
As a young man, Joseph had had dreams of ruling over his people. Instead, he had been sold into slavery by his own brothers, then falsely accused and thrown into prison! His dreams could never come true now.
Over those two long years of imprisonment marked by disappointment and hopelessness, Joseph contemplated the events leading to his current predicament. And as he contemplated, he grew in maturity and wisdom.
The dreams he had when he was still a young man weren’t for his own glory—they were for God’s. And even though Joseph’s circumstances had been constantly changing and making his dreams seem more and more impossible, God never changed. God had a plan greater than Joseph’s mind could possibly fathom.
(adapted from Genesis 37, 40-41)
When Joseph was finally released from prison, the first thing he told Pharaoh is that he could not interpret his troubling dreams. “It is not in me,” Joseph said.
This was Joseph’s one shot at freedom! How could he say that? Because his heart and mind had become set on things above. He went on to say, “God will give Pharaoh a favorable answer.” He now understood that all the suffering he had gone through was part of God’s overarching plan, even if he couldn’t see it yet. Formerly short-sighted Joseph had aligned himself and his dreams with the vision of God, which stretched beyond his life and the lives of his family to bless the entire world through Jesus Christ. We, too, can rest in the fact that even though our dreams may seem impossible due to our circumstances, God is still at work accomplishing His vision.