Friday, November 22, 2013

The Confidence to Succeed

Have you ever met one of those people who are just naturally successful, who seem to be effortlessly organized and one step ahead of everyone else? These are the types of people about whom we refer to as having a charmed life. Of all the characters in the Bible, there are few who better fit this description than Joseph. He had his downfalls, but  always seemed to come out on top. 

(A brief review of Joseph’s life - for more detail, click here - Favored son, his brothers are jealous of him and plan to kill him, but instead sell him into slavery. As a slave in Egypt, he rises to head  Potiphar’s household,  until Potiphar’s wife accuses him of rape. He is jailed, but is  placed in charge of all the other prisoners. After two years, he interprets Pharaoh’s dreams and winds up as Egypt’s Viceroy.)

One of the character traits that appears to be common among successful people is confidence. They believe that they will succeed. Joseph believed completely that God was with him at every moment:

“The name of the Holy One, Blessed be He, never left his [Joseph’s] mouth. When he came in to minister to him [Potiphar], he would whisper and say, ‘Master of the World! You are My Source of trust, You are my Patron, so grant me favor, kindness and mercy in Your eyes and in the eyes of Potiphar my master’” (Midrash Tanchuma Vayeishev 8).

Because Joseph’s confidence was based on his absolute belief that God runs the world, his confidence never grew into arrogance. Rather, Joseph’s success and confidence was a result of the fact that he was perfectly comfortable putting his fate into God’s hands. 

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