In the last few days my Bible reading has taken me back to the story of Joseph. I love that story! Yesterday I noticed something I hadn't seen before. This tale contains a fair bit of repetition, which I suddenly recognized as the repetition of education. During those first years in Egypt, Joseph was in school - and retaking the same subject, just at different levels:
University - Potiphar's house: "Then he made him overseer of his house and all that he had was put under his authority." (Genesis 39:4)
Grad School - Prison: "And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who were in the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing." (Genesis 39:22)
I wonder if Joseph ever got discouraged all those days of serving, wondering what had become of his boyhood dreams. After he connected with the Butler, asked him to take up his case with Pharaoh, and then nothing happened, did he ever battle discouragement or even depression? Who would have blamed him if he did?
Then one day, with no warning, it came.
Graduation Day and the offer of a Plum Job - Pharaoh's Assistant. And didn't the job description have a familiar ring to it? Pharaoh: "You shall be over my house and all my people shall be ruled according to your word." (Genesis 41:40)