Published on 11 May 2011 by in Encouragement


He [the LORD] called for a famine on the land of Canaan, cutting off its food supply. Then he sent someone to Egypt ahead of them, Joseph, who was sold as a slave. There in prison, they bruised his feet with fetters and placed his neck in an iron collar. Until the time came to fulfil his dreams, the LORD tested Josephs character” (Psalm 105:16-19, NLT).

Do you think betrayed, bruised, and bound Joseph dreamed, or even imagined a way out of his painful experiences? Do you think he expected them to ultimately test him, shape him, refine him, lead him, and directionally influence others as a result?

What framework guided Jo’s thinking to see him through every day of unfair captivity, while gingerly trying to sooth his bruised and restrained feet; or, to daily manage an unyielding burden of heavy metal restriction around his neck?

What about you? What dream has been shattered? What unexpected twists and turns have you bound like a prisoner? What extreme limitations squeeze the essence of your character out? Do you daily manage the choke hold or does it manage you?

“Then Pharaoh sent for him and set him free; the ruler of the nation opened his prison door. Joseph was put in charge of all the kings household; he became ruler over all the kings household; he became ruler over all the kings possessions. He could instruct the kings aides as he pleased and teach the kings advisors” (Psalm 105:20-22, NLT).

Joseph daily choices where based on a knowledge of God and a developing relationship of trust. Remember God had given him dreams. I’m sure there were many tough conversations exchanged during those difficult days that grew into years. However, the daily dependence served to cultivate and refine the character we see in Joseph.

CHARACTER inspired the trust of a king; gave way to freedom; and opened the door to oversee and even instruct others. I wouldn’t be surprised if Joseph eventually taught a class for advisors called – Belief 101, which included a section on Hard Knocks from Another Perspective.

Your pain has purpose!

Has God given you a dream? What is your framework of belief when direction shifts to the unexpected? How is it managed daily? Do you engage in conversation with God about the details? Do you trust Him? Would you need to confess and repent of any lie you’ve embraced during the days of disillusionment – about God, yourself, others or your dream and replace with truth? As you focus on God’s trustworthiness – he will build and refine your character according to His dream for you. You never know whose freedom he may be sending you ahead for.

We declare you LORD to be the One true God, infinitely perfect in all your ways as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Your sovereign plans and purposes are high and mighty and truly above our understanding. You are worthy and deserving of our trust. Wherever you place us, whatever the circumstances, may our belief in you reflect as character to those around us! Thank you that you hear and answer prayer!

Jesus told them, This is what God wants you to do: Believe in the one He has sent’” (John 6:29, NLT).

I live by the power of the living Father who sent me; in the same way, those who partake of me will live because of me” (John 6:57, NLT).

©2011 Dr Karen Braun

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