Wednesday, December 15, 2021

          We all know from the Christmas story that Joseph was chosen by God to be the earthly father of Jesus.  Imagine being that man!  Joseph was bewildered, overwhelmed even, by what God was asking of him.  What a promotion for Joseph (or any other man for that matter)!  Rather suddenly, Joseph went from being known as a carpenter to going down in history as the father of the King of kings.  Matthew 1:19-20 tells us a bit of the backstory for how this came to be, “Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, 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.’” 
            God often asks us to serve Him in ways we might find totally overwhelming and for which we think we are totally inadequate.  What does God ask of you?  Where could God be at work in your life?  Where does God ask you to trust Him?  Matthew gives us two messages of encouragement when God might be asking something of us.  First, we learn, as Joseph did, not to be afraid.  We learn to face fear with faith.  We replace fear with faith.  Faith is an acknowledgment that God is greater than we are and the things He may ask of us.  When Abraham was asked to sacrifice Isaac, God provided the ram. Second, God does not cease to be at work just because He calls us to a task.  The Father continued to fulfill His plan to bring His Son into the world.  God did not just leave everything with Joseph and then step away.  God’s work continues unabated in the world even today. 
             When we serve the Lord, we keep this encouragement in mind.  He is trustworthy and He does fulfill His purposes in history.  The Christmas story calls us back to remember and to celebrate events from long ago.  And as we remember, we give thanks for what God continues to do and we look forward to what God will do.  Christmas reminds us that God has not abandoned the world—no matter what some may say or think.  Quite the contrary, God is faithfully at work redeeming all who turn to Him.  God is at work to prepare the way for His Son’s second coming.  As John wrote in Revelation, “Amen.  Come Lord Jesus.”  And come He has.  And come again He will.  History’s greatest moments always pivot around Jesus—His birth, cross, resurrection and return to the Father.  And one day, history’s bookend will be His return.  In this “in-between time” where we are now, we find that God calls us to trust Him and to lean into Him when or if the task seems overwhelming. 
            Matthew 1:24 says that when Joseph woke up from his sleep that he did what the Lord’s angel asked him to do.  He took Mary home as his wife.  He did the one thing that God told him to do at that moment.  And when Jesus was born, Joseph shouldered the awesome task of fatherhood and raised Jesus in the ways of the Father.  Be the parent God calls you to be.  Be a family that seeks the Lord and treasures His Word.  Be a friend to those God places in close proximity to your life.  Be a husband or wife of excellence and grace.  In less than two weeks, we celebrate the wonderful news of Christmas—a Savior has been born.  May that good news of grace, love and welcome radiate from us and may we seek to model that good news for those who so dearly need to hear it and see it.  God takes ordinary people and does extraordinary things through them.  Most of us know just how ordinary we are.  May we grow in our understanding of how awesome God is and how extraordinary are the works of His hands and heart!  Have a great Wednesday!
   

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Aishwarya - December 28th, 2021 at 11:35pm

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