But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” ( which means, God with us). When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel if the Lord commanded him. Matthew 1:20-24
As I said on the 511 and on Sunday, I am glad to be out of quarantine. It was an interesting 14 days. I did not get COVID and I am thankful for that. There were good and challenging times during the 14 days. At times, it was easy to get discouraged and be negative. It was a mental battle to stay encouraged and positive. I appreciate the prayers that were said on my behalf and the support of my family. God was faithful and helped me through this time.
In our scripture reading above, Joseph didn’t have an easy time of it either. He was betrothed to Mary and that all came crashing down as she uttered the words, “I am pregnant”. Questions I am sure flooded his mind. Feelings of betrayal and hurt cut deep. It seemed to get the more unbelievable when she said it was by the Holy Spirit. How could she do this to me? Joseph most likely asked.
He is trying to decide what to do in this situation and then God shows up.
God sends an angel to inform Joseph of what is happening. I am sure Joseph gave a huge sigh of relief. Joseph accepted what the angel said and did as he was commanded to do.
God was with him and he followed through on what needed to be done.
This is the good news of the Christmas season. God is with us.
We all will go through difficult times but in the midst of these times we know that God is by our side. He is our refuge and our strength. He has a plan and has our back. In Him lies true hope, joy, peace and love.
After Jesus’ birth the next time we see Joseph is when Jesus is at the temple at age 12. After that Joseph is absent. It is assumed that Joseph died somewhere between the 12th and 30th year of Jesus life. At first, we may think poor Jesus He had to go through these times without His earthly father. But we know that His heavenly Father was right there with Him. We see Jesus talking with His heavenly Father often and spending time with Him.
It is a reminder to us that when the things of the world let us down, when family is absent for one reason or another. God is with us. God who never disappoints, who is always on time, who is always there with us. The heavenly Father who loves us so much and is always there to guide us and direct us. God is with us.
As we get ready to celebrate Jesus birth, may we always remember God is with us.