Genesis 41:14-16; 37-45 (NIV)
What a great story! The story of Joseph starts out with a bang and just keeps getting better. As the plot thickens we now see Joseph in the palace of Pharaoh. If you recall, Joseph’s life went from being the apple of his father’s eye to being thrown in a pit, to being falsely accused, to jail and not to the palace.
So what’s with the power of power? The abuse of power is wrong and can be devastating. The definition of power is the possession of control or command over others; authority. And that, my friends, is the power of power—control.
Pharaoh, unable to interpret his dream, called for anyone to help, but no one could. Remembering back to when Joseph was in jail along with the cupbearer, upon his release the cupbearer promised Joseph to remember him, but, of course, he didn’t until the Pharaoh asked for anyone to help interpret his dream. Now suddenly the cupbearer remembered Joseph and his ability to interpret dreams. Pharaoh called for Joseph. And, so, the plot thickens.
You see, Joseph’s ability was a gift from God. But when Joseph was just a young man of seventeen, he lacked tact with his family when telling them about his own dreams. Most teens are lacking in that ability so I wouldn’t call him out too much for it. And I certainly don’t think he deserved being thrown in a pit for it. But then that jealousy monster can wreak some serious havoc.
When you look at dreams versus visions in those days, it became important for dreams to be interpreted. Pharaoh’s desperation to have his dream interpreted became a quest. Due to Joseph’s ability, Pharaoh appointing him over Egypt, and instructing the people to bow a knee to him was huge. It’s easy to see how Joseph’s journey from the pit to the palace turned out to be an amazing one.
Here’s the best part. Joseph always gave God the glory. Then when Ephraim and Manasseh came before Joseph, he forgave them. He wanted to forget all the bad and be fruitful again in their relationships.
With power, there are abuses and blessings. It can cause or prevent action. Isn’t it odd that some people in power seem dismayed? We complain about them. The abuse of power happens at every level. Its causes are long-term. The results are the loss of faith and honor and the damage that does.
The blessings of power in this story come to light when we see Reuben coming to the rescue of Joseph. The brothers wanted to kill him but Reuben tried to rescue him and said, “Let’s not take his life. Shed no blood. Throw him into this pit that is in the wilderness, but do not lay hands on him.” Okay, so maybe he was still a creep but not a total creep. In the end, Joseph uses his power as a blessing.
Most times when we think we have no power we lose hope. But, you know, even if there are those who have power over us, there are things that power can never take from us—thoughts, love, memories, our mind, and the ability to choose.
It’s kinda like when Haylie says, “See this phone? I can control the world with this phone! So don’t test me!” She looks pretty serious.
How do we change the power of power? It comes down to this—using power without abusing it—using power for good and not for evil. What’s your level of power and how do you use it?
And that’s what I learned in Church……see ya next time!