4. Use your God given emotional intelligence

As we saw last week Joseph wasn't really popular with his brothers. He tells tales about them to his father and he is clearly more loved by their father than them. Jacob made that perfectly clear when he gave a unique multi colored tunic for Joseph and not for the rest of them. They hated Joseph for that. And then something happened that made them hate him even more. Joseph had dreams.

The first dream was:

"There we were binding sheaves in the field. Then behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf." Genesis 37:7

His brothers hated Joseph even more after this dream, and understandably so. I don't know what Joseph expected after telling them that, but he didn't learn his lesson, for when he had another dream he didn't hesitate to tell them:

"…this time, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars bowed down to me." Genesis 37:9

Now I don't know about you, but I don't know how I would react if someone told me something like this. I would think them arrogant and boastful, definitely not humble as the Bible requires. But I realize that Joseph was still very young and immature. Maybe he wanted to get even with his brothers for treating him badly by telling them the dreams, or maybe he was just genuinely young and naïve, thinking that they will respect him when he told them this. Whichever way, we can definitely learn from this.

We should be very careful to boast about things, especially if it is things that we believe that God is doing in our lives. For example we shouldn't brag about how quickly we got rid of the flu to someone who genuinely struggles to feel better. We shouldn't brag about how well our child is doing in school academically to someone who we know has a child who struggles. We shouldn't brag about our child's sporting abilities to someone whose child genuinely tries but just doesn't have the talent. That is not testifying about God to other people, that is pushing them away.

We had that experience now in COVID. We own two coffeeshops in a hospital and needless to say it has been a tough time for us since March 2020. Now God has looked after us and provided for us, but we had a 60%+ decline in business year on year. Then clients would come into our shop whose businesses are in either telecoms or electronics or supermarkets. Now these industries did extremely well during the pandemic. Then they will say how much God has blessed them and that they are just so glad that He has looked after them and they would go on and on. Now they believe their testimony is great, but in fact it made us feel worse. It made us feel as if they prayed and it went great for them, but we prayed and it didn't. So what is wrong with us? Now I realize most of them meant well, but we need to learn from it and not do the same to people who are not strong in the faith. Fortunately we are strong and we have learned many things from Above during this time, but we all need to be very careful that our 'testimonies' do not cause damage to other people's faith.

God wants us to testify of His goodness and grace, He does. But we need to be sensitive to the leading of His Spirit so that we testify when we should. But also that we rather keep our mouths shut and listen and support others when it is not going that well for them. In supporting and encouraging others when they are down in the dumps does much more good than to 'brag' about all the blessings from God whilst we can clearly see that it is not going that well with the person in front of us. We need to use our God given emotional intelligence and rather live as an example to God and support others where we can.

I believe God gave these dreams to Joseph to encourage him and give him strength in the difficult times that lay ahead for him. I don't think it was dreams to share with his brothers, especially when they already had a strained relationship. His dreams did come true when his brothers bowed before him in Egypt, but I truly believe that those dreams were the forerunner to encourage Joseph and to show him the future. These dreams helped him to see his gift with dreams and to enable him to unveil to the Pharaoh his dream when the time came.

Father thank you for blessing us with so much. Please help us to know when to share these blessings with others as a testimony and when to rather keep quiet and help others where they need it the most. Please give us the emotional intelligence to know the difference. Amen

1 comment for “4. Use your God given emotional intelligence”

  1. Gravatar of MariMari
    Posted Monday, 20 September 2021 at 6:20:35 PM

    Amen. Ja dit laat mens 2keer dink. Jy bedoel dalk goed, maar op daardie punt & tyd is dit nie wat di luisteraar dan wil hoor nie. Moet fyn luister na di stem vd Heilige Gees. Dankie Ilze

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