“Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him even more.” Genesis 37:5 ESV
When Joseph woke, he could hardly wait to see his brothers and tell them about his dream. He wanted to show his brothers they would one day be subject to his authority and they would no longer be able to bully him. Joseph’s brothers were not his biggest fans, they did not care for their arrogant younger brother, but his bragging about the dream was just too much.
“He said to them, “Hear this dream that I have dreamed: Behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf arose and stood upright. And behold your sheaves gathered around it and bowed down to my sheaf.” Genesis 37:6,7 ESV
Put yourself in the older brothers place for a moment. Your younger brother, the one who has been a pain in your backside, the one who always tells Dad what you have done, decides to tell you about his dream. It’s a dream about how you will someday bow down to the little blister to give him honor. You may find yourself saying something like, “In a pig’s eye!”
Joseph told his brothers the dream and it did not endear him to them, to say the least. Joseph gave them the details of his dream, which was not the wisest of choices. This is what leads me to believe Joseph had developed into the perfect example of the spoiled son. His behavior showed he thought he could pretty much say what he wanted since he enjoyed favored son status. So, he took advantage of his position to let his brothers know just how things stood.
Sometimes it is easy to lose sight that the men and women in the Bible are just as human as you and me. They struggled with the same issues of fear, guilt, shame, worthlessness, rejection, etc., we all suffer through. What makes these life lessons so important for us is we are shown how God works in the lives of His children. We are no better than, nor are we any worse than Joseph, his brothers, or anyone else God tells us about in the bible stories that reveal His Grace.
“His brothers said to him, “Are you indeed to reign over us? Or are you indeed to rule over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.” Genesis 37:8 ESV
There is so much for us to learn as we grow into maturity, as we experience life. In the learning we will makes mistakes and we will be stubborn about what God is teaching. We will think we need to tell those around us how wonderful we are, about our “dreams” of glory, mostly because I believe we need to find value in something we do, we think, say, or write. We desperately need to find we have some form of value, something that says we matter.
Somewhere between childhood and our teens we are indoctrinated with lies. The lies tell us we have no reason to exist, and there is nothing redeemable in our lives. When this occurs, we seek to prove the opposite is true. Often this comes in the form of attempting to show we are better than those around us. This is where we begin our schooling in judging, condemning, and trying to prove we are better than (fill in the blank)! Joseph, like us, was subject to these emotions and lies telling him he wasn’t anything special.
God is in the process of leading us to discover our worth in His Grace. As we enter into this transformation healing will begin, the healing we all desperately need. This healing allows us to know we are priceless, and so is everyone else. This healing begins the destruction of a superior attitude, and shows us we are all in need of saving; we are each one in need of God’s active gift of grace in our process.