Beach time!

Beach time!

Monday, December 19, 2011

The character of Joseph

I haven't written in a few days. Every time I sat down to write the next post, I drew a blank. I felt like it was better to pause than to manufacture something that was without God's leading. So, I am back with a new 'Fear Not"

...he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

Matthew 1:19-20

Whenever I think of the story of Christmas, the person on the forefront of my mind is Mary-her favor, her sacrifice, her obedience. I often forget about Joseph. Joseph had his entire life before him. He was pledged to marry Mary and was settling into his future when he hears of Mary's "condition". Common sense would have told him that being conceived by the Holy Spirit was insane. Common sense would have told him that he should respect her dignity enough to let her go quietly. Fear told him that what Mary was telling him was impossible. I'm sure he struggled with his own reputation as well as Mary's and his own sense of pride. Life would have been easier and more convenient to go with his own feelings in this situation.

One problem: God told him through an angel what he was to do. He is clearly told by an angel of God to marry Mary, name the child Jesus, and raise him in his home. So, he made the hardest decision he had ever made in his life. He obeyed God, going against all common sense, opinions of friends and family, and his own feelings of fear.

It turns out that many of Joseph's fears were realities. His friends and family surely doubted their story and life was harder than it would have been without this calling to obedience. He had to watch his wife give birth in a barn, escape to Egypt for several years, and raise a child he knew he would lose in adulthood. But, oh the rewards of obedience. Mary and Joseph's life would never be the same again.

I want to remember this when I know that a calling to obedience will mean hardship. But even amidst that hardship, living in the very center of God's will provides a life-sustaining peace.

Watch this video that shows some scenes of "The Nativity Story". If you and your family haven't watched this movie, it's an incredible way to anchor the Christmas season.!
Love and blessings.

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