Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Genesis 41:1-14

It’s amazing how a small phrase in scripture can say so much! Look at the beginning of chapter 41:

When two full years had passed. . . Oh my gosh! Two FULL years! Beth Moore reminds us that is 730 days of waiting! Remember that Joseph had already been in prison for a long time before the cupbearer was sent there, so the two years is just how long he had been forgotten. I love what Beth says about this: . . . we can almost hear the echo in the hollow of a clock’s relentless tick, “Nothing yet! Nothing yet!” Time can be a liar. Heaven is replete with angelic activity as God faithfully completes in the spiritual realm what He will release in the visible realm when the time is right. (The Patriarchs, P. 187)

It may LOOK like nothing is happening, but God is working in the spiritual realm at all times! This made me think about the many times in my life that I have had to wait for something, and looking back I can see God’s timing has always been just right. So often He makes us wait just so we KNOW that the eventual answer is from Him and so that only HE will get the glory. Always, He is working out something in our lives. So, I’m also wondering if any of you have stories of your own that you would share with us about waiting?? I would LOVE to hear them!

Now, let’s get on with Joseph’s release already! :)

When two full years had passed, Pharaoh had a dream: He was standing by the Nile, when out of the river there came up seven cows, sleek and fat, and they grazed among the reeds. After them, seven other cows, ugly and gaunt, came up out of the Nile and stood beside those on the riverbank. And the cows that were ugly and gaunt ate up the seven sleek, fat cows. Then Pharaoh woke up.

He fell asleep again and had a second dream: Seven heads of grain, healthy and good, were growing on a single stalk. After them, seven other heads of grain sprouted—thin and scorched by the east wind. The thin heads of grain swallowed up the seven healthy, full heads. Then Pharaoh woke up; it had been a dream. (Gen 41:1-7)

This finally reminded the cupbearer of his promise! I can see him hitting his head, thinking, “Oh, my gosh - Joseph!!” He related to Pharaoh how Joseph had correctly interpreted his dream and that of the chief baker.

One important thing that Beth Moore notes about this cupbearer: we know that God was sovereign in the timing - He could have given Pharaoh the dreams at any time - but that does not negate the responsibility of the cupbearer who forgot his oath to Joseph, who had encouraged him in his time of need in prison. And, in fact, the cupbearer takes full responsibility in verse 9. Let’s look at three different translations of what he said:

I do remember my faults this day. (KJV)

Today I am reminded of my shortcomings. (NIV)

Today I have been reminded of my failure. (New Living Translation)

I have been focusing on the idea of our waiting, but this story is also about how we may have kept others waiting, too. Can you identify with the cupbearer here? Have people ever depended upon you and you let them down by forgetting them? Did you casually promise to pray for them, and then forgot? Think about the years your parents spent caring for your every need. Have you neglected them in their old age? One of my biggest regrets in my life is a time when I disappointed my mother when she needed me most!

So Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and he was quickly brought from the dungeon. When he had shaved and changed his clothes, he came before Pharaoh. (vs. 14)

Really? He was “quickly” brought?? It couldn’t have been fast enough! I’m imagining how good it must have felt to get cleaned up and shaved! Like being at a spa! Tomorrow we’ll see how God, having fully prepared Joseph for this moment, finally used him to bless millions!

1 comment:

  1. What a great devotion. Mom! Thank you! I wish I had time to recount here all the times the waiting has been SO WORTH it!! Waiting for my husband is the best example of that. My Aunt Nancy gave me a clock years and years ago that still sits on my bathroom counter that is one of my prized possessions- it says, "God's timing is always perfect!" So true!!