I recently read the story again about Joseph (Genesis 37-47), and how he grew from an immature teen into the leader that was handed the keys of authority in Egypt and who saved the entire Israelite population from starvation during a seven year famine. You are surely familiar with Joseph (the coat of many colors, dream interpreter, thrown into a well by his brothers, sold into slavery, etc…)
What can we learn about Godly leadership through the life story of Joseph?
- Leaders are developed…not born. As a teen, he created division in his family with his over confidence and untactful attitude. He didn’t have natural abilities.
- Developing as a leader takes time. His journey started at the age of 17. He was 30 before he was given a true leadership position. It was another 14 years before he had truly arrived as a leader.
- Even during difficult trials, he never cursed God. He remained faithful and allowed God to use him. His character and integrity were never sacrificed.
- He didn’t take revenge when his position would have allowed him to do so. Instead he forgave his brothers, and gave Glory to God for His hand in his life. He used his leadership position to serve, not to be served.
There are many more lessons to be learned from this story, but here are a few thoughts to make this personal.
God’s timing is long term…not short term. Are you asking God to do something in your life NOW!? What if God has a bigger long term plan for your life. It’s better to be in GOD’s will, than attempt to get God in line with YOUR will.
Do you sometimes feel like you just aren’t as effective or influencial as you want to be? Do you sometimes feel like your gifts and abilities are just not being used to their fullest? Remember that leadership takes time and is developed daily. Look at your daily habits and start taking intentional daily steps at growing in a particular area. Be open to new opportunities (big or small), and seek out opportunities to serve.
Who knows, over time, God might just use you for GREAT things you never saw coming.