By: Pastor Jarren Rogers
“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved.” – Helen Keller
Immature would probably not be a word that anyone would use to describe Joseph.
He became the head of Potiphar’s household, he was put in charge of the prison, he interpreted dreams, directed Pharaoh, became second in command over all of Egypt, and helped save millions and millions of lives after a famine swept across the world.
But immature Joseph was not.
But I noticed something when I read through Joseph’s story again. When we first meet Joseph and his coat of many colors, he is gloating to his brothers, telling them how they will all bow down to him one day.
“So, get this,” he said, “I had this dream, right? And, well, long story short, ya’ll gonna be bowing down to me.”
Very smooth Joseph.
I think if you read through Joseph’s story beginning in Genesis 37, you’ll see how much he had grown and developed throughout his life. He started as a very immature boy who couldn’t keep his mouth shut, but he grew into a spiritually strong man who directs kings!
What caused this much development?
Joseph was dropped in a pit, betrayed, sold into slavery, falsely accused, thrown into prison, forgotten, and abandoned. But where we see adversity, God saw an opportunity for advancement.
“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good” Genesis 50:20).
God grew Joseph’s faith, strengthened his character, hardened his resolve, deepened his experience, and built his wisdom. God carefully nurtured Joseph into the man that He wanted him to be and He used Joseph’s trials as his pruning shears.
God doesn’t cause our trials. But he allows them to happen and uses them for good.
Just like Joseph, God wants to change us for the better in our trials.
Will you let him?
Parents: Ask your children about the story of Joseph. Explain to them how, just like Joseph, God wants to grow us and strengthen our faith in the midst of our trials.