God's Unconventional Path to Greatness
Updated: Jul 6, 2021
THE WORD of God may not lead you to ease, and it will not lead you astray.
When God spoke to Ananias about Saul of Tarsus, he said, “I have much to show him (Saul), including how much he must suffer for My name;” he meant Paul had a lot to learn (Acts 9:16).
God had put him on the unconventional path to greatness.
JOSEPH HAD been on a difficult walk of life. When he was thrown in prison by Potiphar, he still had a lot to learn. But he had his dream.
The presence of God was with him—and he was made the head of the prisoners.
One day, two palace staff offended Pharaoh, and they were thrown in the same prison.
The same night, the baker and the cupbearer had a dream.
When Joseph came to check on them the following morning, both men looked troubled.
Why do you both look dejected today?
We’ve both had dreams, and there is no one in this prison to interpret them.
Interpretation belongs to God, Joseph replied.
Joseph told them to tell him their dream—and this lightened their mood.
They thought that this was a moment of revelation.
Although his dream was yet to come to pass, he was willing to spend time to solve their problems. Joseph preferred them to himself.
Whenever you have the opportunity, God wants you to invest in people’s lives.
If you know the good you ought to do and do not do it, it is a sin for you. (James 4:17)
On the path to greatness, there will always be a need to meet.
ONE WILL think he had enough to grapple with—despite his situation, he was willing to put a smile on people’s faces.
He wanted to serve rather than be served.
When the cupbearer told him his dream, Joseph said that Pharaoh would restore him to his position in three days.
These were words that will change his life. He was so close to a breakthrough, yet he did not know it.
Amid the euphoria, Joseph told the cupbearer to put in a word for him.
But when he was released, he forgot Joseph. (Genesis 40:1-21)
Joseph was trying to put his disappointments behind him—and when he thought things would change, he was disappointed again.
Do you feel discouraged? Do you feel forgotten by family and friends?
The reality is that the human memory is short—and we are fixated on ourselves.
We mostly remember people when we need their assistance, but we can do better.
We must always remind ourselves that we live in a world full of people and reach out to them from time to time.
TWO YEARS later, Pharaoh had a dream—and he woke up startled.
Then, he slept again and had a second dream.
The following morning, he felt uneasy; so, he called his wise men and magicians for a consultation.
When he told them his dreams, none of them could say to him the meaning.
Then, the cupbearer remembered Joseph. He moved quickly to redeem his image, and he went to Pharaoh. (Genesis 41:1-9)
Many of us may be quick to cancel the cupbearer, but we are not any better.
Whenever we look at our faces in the mirror, we must see ourselves as recovering Pharisees.
THE CUPBEARER narrated what happened in prison to Pharaoh, and he sent for Joseph.
When Pharaoh saw Joseph, he told him that he hoped that he would interpret his dream.
But Joseph replied, “I cannot do this, but God will answer Pharaoh’s questions and relieve your concerns.” (Genesis 41:16)
Joseph understood that he was a man used by God.
He listened to Pharaoh’s dreams and gave him the interpretation.
He also told him that the future is fixed—this was about the significance of God.
Expect great things from God; attempt great things for God – William Carey.
MY ADVICE is that Pharaoh should select someone who is wise and discerning and put him in charge of the land of Egypt during this time. (Genesis 41:33)
Pharaoh confirmed that he couldn’t find anyone wiser than him.
He made Joseph his second-in-command—and to make sure none queries it, there was an official ceremony and a wedding ceremony for him.
The way to greatness is service.
The measure of a man’s greatness is not the number of servants he has but the number of people he serves – John Hagee.
BRINGING IT TOGETHER
GOD SHIELDED him when necessary and left him vulnerable to teach him life.
If he had been at home, he would have been sheltered and protected by his father.
But away from home, he was exposed to the various elements of life—it was God’s unconventional path to greatness.