TAKING GROUND: Journeying from 'NOW' to 'THEN'

  • Genesis 37:5, ESV NOW Joseph had a dream…

  • Genesis 41:39–40, ESV THEN Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has shown you all this, there is none so discerning and wise as you are. You shall be over my house, and all my people shall order themselves as you command. Only as regards the throne will I be greater than you.”

God reveals land He has for you VIA: Bible, Rhema, prophecy, dreams, visions, leaders, preaching, things in your heart that grow into conviction.

Once land is revealed, there is a journey to be taken, preparations, plans, work!

The from ‘NOW’ to “THEN’ Journey

  • Dream 1 - Genesis 37:7, ESV Behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf arose and stood upright. And behold, your sheaves gathered around it and bowed down to my sheaf.”

  • Dream 2 - Genesis 37:9, ESV Then he dreamed another dream and told it to his brothers and said, “Behold, I have dreamed another dream. Behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”

  • His dream happened when He was 17 years old

  • That same year he was sold to slave traders, landing in the house of Potiphar

  • He served Potiphar 11 years, when he accused of rape by Potiphar’s wife

  • At 28 he was thrown into prison two years

  • At 30 he interpreted a dream for Pharaoh and was released from prison and elevated to 2nd in command in Egypt.

  • 9 years later, at age 39, his brothers arrive in Egypt, he remains unknown

  • For the next two years his brothers journey back and forth, and after Joseph reveals his identity, the bring their father.

  • At age 41, almost 25 years later, he is reunited with his father who bows down with his brothers to Joseph

Why does it take so long to take the land God has for us? There are a number of reasons, but THE BIGGEST? the WHO YOU CURRENTLY ARE must journey to the WHO YOU NEED TO BE, so that the OPPORTUNITY can MATURE and the OUTCOME can be HIS BEST

  • most ground promised is conditional - are “if you do X, then I will do Y…” therefore “if you don’t do X…

  • Samson was promised great ground, but it was polluted by his failure to BECOME the man who could live out the vision.

  • too often we often think our greatest obstacle to us taking our promised land is our CIRCUMSTANCES when in reality, the greatest obstacle is actually WHO WE ARE.


  • We see ourselves as the center of everything!



    • the fact that he told family

    • the way he told family

    • how he celebrated a second dream

  • He was filled with PRIDE – improper assessment of self; measuring yourself with a standard other than God’s (over value or under value).

    • Proverbs 16:18, ESV Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.

  • PRIDE will always place self at the center of the vision (I can’t do it, or I can do it)

    • God’s has called me to do great things vs. God wants to do great things for others and he is allowing me to play a role.

  • Situations have a way of revealing our PRIDE so it can be dealt with:

    • no opportunity offered when you feel like you should have one

    • an opportunity “beneath you” is offered

    • someone else gets the opportunity you should have gotten

    • when you struggle with feeling overlooked, under-appreciated

    • when you feel like someone holding you back

    • when you feel like you should be in charge instead of them

  • Joseph saw himself as center, but:

    • in the end, the real story was the people that would need his help

    • in the end, his role was never more than second:

      • we will only ever be stewards

      • Genesis 41:39–40, ESV THEN Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has shown you all this, there is none so discerning and wise as you are. You shall be over my house, and all my people shall order themselves as you command. Only as regards the throne will I be greater than you.”

      • his FIRST-SHIP and our SECOND-HOOD must be established or our entire lives will be out of alignment.

  • Joseph’s transformation was remarkable in this arena – the way he honors his family and brothers in remarkable.


  • there is an exciting piece of ground in your future, but before you get there, the piece of ground you stand on now matters!

  • Here is not a circumstance you are passing through, it’s the foundation that the building will be built on.

  • Faithfulness on this piece of ground is the stepping stone to future pieces of ground. (this job, this ministry, this income, this house, etc.)

    • Matthew 25:21, ESV His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’

  • Here is also the training ground for there - crawl, walk and then run

  • Here matters!

    • Joseph was not out in the field with His brothers

    • Joseph was not part of the harvest or it’s solutions

    • Joseph was not building rapport with the team

    • Joseph was looking to the day when all would bow down.

  • part of sowing/reaping is doing so in spite of pushback - failed with Potiphar’s wife, but quickly learned in prison.

  • you cannot allow someone’s wrong actions to keep you from right action


  • early on, Joseph’s greatest weakness was his people skills

  • all ground is taken via favorable relationships

  • relationships of today will lead you to the army you will need tomorrow to accomplish all that God has called you to do.

    • The seeds of good deeds become a tree of life; a wise person wins friends. Proverbs 11:30, NLT

  • Fifteen years from now you will need the references of someone in this room.

  • There are no unimportant people in your world!

  • Winning your enemies is critical

  • Josephs greatest transformation was his people skills

Joseph was clearly one of the most flawed people to start with, but he allowed the process of God top shape His life! During your journey, you are in His process of being transformed from who you are into who He’s called you to be! Surrender to His Process!!!

  • Isaiah 49:1–3, ESV The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name. He made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me a polished arrow; in his quiver he hid me away. And he said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified.”