At the beginning of my Torah portion
of Mikketz, Joseph is called upon to interpret Pharaoh’s two very strange
dreams. The first was about 7 fat cows being eaten by 7 skinny cows. The second
one was about 7 healthy stalks of wheat being devoured by 7 wilting sheaves of
Joseph states that the seven fat cows and 7 healthy sheaves of wheat stand for seven years of plenty, and the skinny cows and drying wheat stand for seven years of famine, which will follow the good years. He tells them that the key is to plan ahead and store as much food as possible during the seven good years so that there will be enough food to last through the lean years.
All the while, I'll await my armored fate with
Still wanna try, still believe in (good days, good days on my mind)
Always sunny inside (always in my mind)
Good day living in my mind.
In some ways the song and the dream are similar. Just as happy memories can help us to get through the sad times, so can the food saved up during the good times get us through the years of famine.
Maybe Joseph should have tried that out with his brothers. They were all very mean to one another, and only when they stopped playing those games could they come back together as a family. That didn’t happen in my portion. But stay tuned for next week!
The third interpretation is that we need to be aware of those who don’t have enough to eat, like those skinny cows. That’s what I’m trying to do with my mitzvah project. I have been collecting shoes and donating them to an organization called “Soles for Souls,” which distributes them to less affluent places in the world where people can sell them to make enough money to feed their families. I know that cows don’t wear shoes, but people do – and I want to help them.
So as you can see, Joseph may not have been the only one to come
up with good interpretations for Pharaoh’s dreams.
I’m sure that if I had more time I could come up with
more. But as I become bat mitzvah today,
the most important thing I’ve learned from the story of Joseph is to never stop dreaming.