Toward the end of my Senior year, one day, I received a letter in my inbox that the office of the president wanted to see me. I didn’t know what for so I went to the office. President Conn, the president of Lee University, had specifically named me with a few other seniors to give our testimony before the entire student body at chapel. We had about 5-10 minutes to share.
The Lord immediately spoke to me what He wanted me to share. I spoke about Joseph and the naming of his sons Manasseh and Ephriham. Those who were close to me knew the significance of the story. You see Joseph went through years and years of mistreatment. Some might say the pride of sharing his dreams and the corresponding results were his fault but God was faithful. While some of that may be true, I think I began to understand Joseph a little better because of my personal journey. He was dreamer. I don’t think it was ever his heart to be prideful our haughty. He just was impressed by God and excited that God was speaking to him and showing him mysteries. Yes, maybe he should not have been so forthcoming. However, his own brothers, the ones that should have protected him, nurtured his calling, and stood by him, were more often offended by him and jealous. This led to years and decades of enslavement and wrongs. I can just for a fraction relate to the hurt and abuse. But, Joseph never stopped loving, serving and seeking God. God eventually elevated Joseph and gave him two sons. Joseph named his first, Manasseh, meaning the Lord has caused me to forget. He named his second, Ephriham, meaning the Lord has caused me to be fruitful. That passage is so emotional to me, because I lived this during my four years at Lee. Truly, for all the pain and hurt I experienced during those first two years at the hands of friends, leaders, and brothers, the Lord gave me two years of fruitfulness, support, and friendship. Because I continued to seek Him and never give up, the Lord allowed me to forget the pain of previous years (whether by my fault through ignorance or arrogance). He then led me to a land where I could be fruitful and accepted for who I was. I remember being in class after chapel and a teacher was speaking about the speech I just gave. He mentioned mine and began laughing. He said, “The message was good, but geez, what was so bad for you to draw that comparison?” I just smiled and said, “That was what I felt I needed to share.” If he only knew the full story.