Pharaoh couldn’t sleep when dreams interrupted his slumber. Has anything been keeping you up at night? When you feel overwhelmed with the need to forgive, we can learn from Joseph’s example. When he was called up from the dungeon to stand before the most powerful man in the empire, Joseph humbly admitted that dream interpretation was beyond him. “It is beyond my power to do this,” Joseph replied. “But God can tell you what it means and set you at ease.” (Genesis 41:16) We need to stop trying to fix our own problems or those of others around us. Like Joseph, we must start by admitting that we can’t do it on our own. We need God’s help. The posture of humility displayed in this scene before Pharaoh’s throne echoes with relevancy into so many facets of life.
God doesn’t leave us in a state of helplessness when we realize we can’t solve our problems on our own. He wants to provide insight and set our minds at ease. He doesn’t want us to continue in sleepless agony over things we can’t understand, much less change. We can say along with Joseph, “It is beyond my power to do this…But God…..” Those last two words change everything. This verse does not evoke a picture of Joseph shuffling his feet and looking at the floor like a foreign prisoner. We see a bold Joseph who is sure of himself, commanding the room. His confidence is not in himself but in the God who has helped him take steps toward forgiveness in a dungeon for the last few years.
Take a minute right now and make a similar statement to God:
God, I can’t figure out __________________ on my own anymore. It is not in my power to do it.
Coupled with Joseph’s humility was his boldness. He believed His God could do anything. Finish your prayer in this way:
God, I boldly proclaim that you have got this situation. Please put my mind at ease and show me what you are calling me to do next.
You might be tempted to take back what you just released to God. I have a feeling that Joseph regularly practiced surrender. It wasn’t just a one-time thing. So next time sleep won’t come, remember to practice the humility and boldness of Joseph, and you just might find a new direction for the future taking shape in your life.