Derek Smith, Lead Pastor LHBC
Jacob lived in the land of his father’s sojournings, in the land of Canaan. These are the generations of Jacob.
Joseph, being seventeen years old, was pasturing the flock with his brothers. He was a boy with the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, his father’s wives. And Joseph brought a bad report of them to their father. Now Israel loved Joseph more than any other of his sons, because he was the son of his old age. And he made him a robe of many colors. But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peacefully to him.
Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers they hated him even more. 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.” 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.
Growing up we have lots of dreams. We dream of being astronauts, or movie stars, or professional athletes, or some other seemingly glamorous profession. As we get older our dreams begin to change but we still have them. Some dream of finishing college. Some dream of getting married and having children. Others dream of owning that nice home or driving that incredible car. Countless people dream of traveling the world and seeing all that culture has to offer. While some dream of getting that big job promotion or running a successful business.
The story of Joseph is all about a God anointed, God appointed dream. God gave Joseph a vision of great things to come and the only thing that kept Joseph grounded during all the hardship and the trials was the vision he received from the Lord as a 17 year old boy. Our dreams shape our destiny. If you don’t have a God anointed dream to live for life can become an endless cycle of monotony filled with bitter longing and dissatisfaction. This is why so many people have midlife crises, it’s because they look back on the first half of their vocational life and realize much of what they’ve worked and lived for has no real eternal value.
So, what’s your dream? If you had 10 million dollars and endless time to invest in anything, what would you invest in? The answer to that question is your dream, and it’s a spiritual MRI deep into the recesses of your soul. Can I be real honest with you? If you’re thinking right now about all the stuff you’d buy with it and all the places you’d take vacations that’s an astoundingly shallow and narcissistic dream! Here’s a better question: whose lives would you most like to change for Christ’s sake with all that time and money? What need would you like to meet in the name of Jesus Christ? Would you build an orphanage in Haiti? Would you start a Christian school in Africa? Would you feed starving people in India and give them the gospel of Christ? Would you start a church in your community? Would you minister to the homeless and the hungry in Jesus name? How you dream shapes the daily decisions you make and therefore shapes your destiny.
Okay, you ready? So…..live out your dream! Whatever just came to your mind why don’t you live for that stuff now? If you’re married talk with your spouse and dream together. You say, “Pastor, we don’t have 10 million dollars and endless time to invest.” Here’s a profound truth that was shared with me recently: if you don’t invest the little bit of money and time you have now for the mission of God and the dream in your heart you wouldn’t invest it if you had endless resources. What you do with the small amount of resources you now have is indicative of what matters most to you. When you go on to read about the life of Joseph, you see that everywhere he went he wound up in charge. Why? Because his dream was to lead many people and provide for their needs in the name of Yahweh God. Interestingly enough, he did just that. When you dream like a leader, you’ll live like one. Joseph found out quickly there are haters of your dream, and there will be of yours also, but don’t let that stop you! Don’t let selfish ambition or the criticism of others keep you from dreaming and doing what God has called you to do! Choose today to invest all your time, money, and attention to the dream of seeing the world won to Christ and the hope of Jesus spread. Never again settle for temporal pleasures. Dream, and don’t let the enemy or the world keep you from seeing it become a reality.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Father God, you are such a big God. There is no power comparable to Yours and no wisdom comparative to Your wisdom. Lord, show me the dream you have for my life and help me to believe you for it. Show me how you want me to spread your gospel, hope, and love throughout this world, and help me to follow and obey what you tell me to do to accomplish it. Nothing is impossible with You Lord. In Jesus name I pray, amen.
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.