28 “It is just as I said to Pharaoh: God has shown Pharaoh what he is about to do. 29 Seven years of great abundance are coming throughout the land of Egypt, 30 but seven years of famine will follow them. Then all the abundance in Egypt will be forgotten, and the famine will ravage the land. 31 The abundance in the land will not be remembered, because the famine that follows it will be so severe. 32 The reason the dream was given to Pharaoh in two forms is that the matter has been firmly decided by God, and God will do it soon. 33 “And now let Pharaoh look for a discerning and wise man and put him in charge of the land of Egypt. 34 Let Pharaoh appoint commissioners over the land to take a fifth of the harvest of Egypt during the seven years of abundance. 35 They should collect all the food of these good years that are coming and store up the grain under the authority of Pharaoh, to be kept in the cities for food. 36 This food should be held in reserve for the country, to be used during the seven years of famine that will come upon Egypt, so that the country may not be ruined by the famine.” 37 The plan seemed good to Pharaoh and to all his officials. 38 So Pharaoh asked them, “Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the spirit of God?” 39 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. 40 You shall be in charge of my palace, and all my people are to submit to your orders. Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.” 41 So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I hereby put you in charge of the whole land of Egypt.” 42 Then Pharaoh took his signet ring from his finger and put it on Joseph’s finger. He dressed him in robes of fine linen and put a gold chain around his neck. 43 He had him ride in a chariot as his second-in-command, and people shouted before him, “Make way!” Thus he put him in charge of the whole land of Egypt.
1. Personal growth is just that, personal.
The decision to grow is one that only you can make. Joseph had no encouragement from family or friends and yet set out on a personal growth journey that put him in a position God could bless.
2. Make a plan.
You cannot replicate what you haven’t practiced
Proverbs 21:5 The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.
In order for growth to be a consistent part of our lives we must have a plan that guides us into becoming the person God would have us be.
Read, Listen, Apply, Repeat
3. Circumstances don’t determine your growth, you do.
Timothy 4:2-5 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
Circumstances should never be the determining factor in your personal growth. Paul instructed Timothy to, “be ready.” We must grow in all different types of circumstances. Joseph was in the most difficult of circumstances, yet he kept himself ready for the opportunity when it presented itself.
Connect Group Questions
- Have you ever considered whether you are continually growing?
- Have you ever been challenged to take responsibility for your personal growth?
- What are some practices that you could immediately implement to ensure that you are continually growing?
- Can you name someone who you could contact that is older and farther along than you are?
- What happens to us when we let our circumstances determine whether we grow or not?
- What do you think of the statement, “God rewards behavior not circumstances”?