3 Lessons of Character from the Life an Israeli Youth Named Joseph: You Will Learn How to Make Your Dreams to Become a Reality
Is this the time to fulfill your dreams?
We all face situations where our character will be tried and tested. Our response to these pressures will determine whether we will make our dreams become a reality.
The story of Joseph gives us a picture of the character it takes to overcome life’s challenges. I will not be going through the whole story in this article. I will not be able to cover all the insights in one article. A book can be written about the life of Joseph. To read the full story you can find it in the Bible (Genesis 37 – 50).
Joseph’s Home Life
- At the age of 17, he worked for his brothers tending his father’s sheep.
- He never partook in the bad things his brothers were doing
- He was hated by his brothers because his father loved him the most
- His brothers could not say a kind word to him
- When he told his brothers his dreams of the future their hatred towards him grew
- His dreams were shot down by his family members
- His brothers plotted to kill him. They said, “…Then we’ll see what becomes of his dreams.”
- Was thrown into a pit to die. His brothers took him out and sold him as a slave because they did not want to be left with a guilty conscience for killing him. They reasoned that they could deal with selling him as a slave more than killing him. He should suffer rather than their conscience.
- His brothers lied to their father that he was dead. The news of his death grieved his father very much.
Joseph’s home life was not a good one. He must’ve battled with feelings of rejection and being misunderstood by his family members. His dreams were too much to handle so they sold him into slavery.
He was taken away from the love of his father and taken into a place where he would live as someone else’s property. There are people right now living as modern-day slaves. Some were sold by their very own families. Some have been re-united to their families and many are still being searched for. Their stories are a sad reality of what people will do for money, power or revenge.
Whatever family situation or circumstance you are facing remember that you can choose how you respond to it. People do strange things to satisfy their desires and longings. We must not become prisoners of their bad behaviour.
Next, we will take a look at how Joseph was able to flourish in the midst of his trials. The first lesson of character displayed by Joseph is his ability to stay motivated by his vision of the future life he will live.
1. Remained Motivated by a Vision of the Future Life He Would Live
Joseph was given a dream by God that he will be a ruler. His destiny was shown to him at the age of 17. He had to endure many trials before he saw that dream become a reality.
People who carry vision have a different attitude about life and the circumstances they face. Take a view of the things that Joseph endured before his dream came true:
- Was a slave in a foreign land at 17 years old. He probably did not know the language of the country. Imagine his emotional state as he arrived in this unfamiliar land.
- He was falsely accused of trying to rape his boss’ wife. She wanted to sleep with him but he refused to betray his master and dishonour his God.
- Lost his position of honour in the house of his master and placed into a prison reserved for criminals.
- His boss did not listen to his side of the story. He was just thrown into prison after his master heard the story from his accuser.
- He helped the chief cup-bearer with a dream interpretation but the chief cup-bearer immediately forgot him when he was released from prison. Joseph had asked the chief cup-bearer to remember that Joseph helped him. Joseph had to wait two years before the chief cup-bearer told the king about him and Joseph was released from prison.
Joseph remained an asset to the people in the prison regardless of his challenges. The vision that he had of his future life must have burned inside of him.
When a person carries a vision they see it as something that has already happened. They see trials as tools to help propel them towards their vision.
Joseph kept a good attitude while he was in prison and ended up being promoted by the prison warden to look after all the prisoners. Next, we are going to look at Joseph’s good work ethic.
2. He had a good work ethic
Characteristics of Joseph’s good work ethic:
- He was successful in everything that he did while serving Potiphar’s house.
- His success was recognised and got promoted to be in charge of his boss’ household and everything that his boss owned
- Made sure that all his boss’ affairs ran smoothly. His boss only had to worry about personally choosing the meals that he would eat for each day.
- While he was in prison, he was put in charge of all the other prisoners and over everything that happened in the prison. The warden had no worries because Joseph took care of everything.
- He was entrusted with the wealth of the nation at age 30.
- He was given the position of being 2nd in charge of the nation of Egypt at age 30.
Joseph was available to help wherever he was needed. He used the gifts that God had given him to add value to the environment he was in. In the end he was given power and authority over the land he was sold into as a slave. A boy sold into slavery became the Prime Minister of a nation. Next, we will examine the third characteristic that Joseph displayed.
3. He was a leader who knew his purpose
After all the troubles that Joseph endured he was placed in a position of great power and authority. Nothing in Egypt could be done without his consent. Only Pharaoh was higher than him in command.
Joseph did not use his position of power to seek revenge against all those who oppressed him in the past. He knew that he was placed in that position by God to help the people during the famine.
In the end, the dream that God gave him of ruling over his family came to pass. He forgave his brothers and all the other people who tried to inflict harm over him.
Joseph knew that his purpose as a leader was to make sure that there were enough resources stored during the years of plenty. So that there would enough resources to help feed the nation and the neighbouring countries too. He ran the affairs of the nation very well.
The story of Joseph has many other examples of character that we can apply to our lives. His life was not perfect yet he managed to achieve success despite the hard circumstances that he faced.
You may be going through something in your life that seems like it is going to kill you or the dreams that you have been given by God. You can use the life of Joseph as an example to overcome the obstacles you are facing right now. Just like Joseph, you too, are able to make your dreams become a reality.
Believe that your life is destined for greatness and you will succeed no matter what circumstance you face in life. Your gift is needed to solve the problems that we face in the world. You have something of value to provide to your nation.