This the Bible account: 18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about[a]: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit.19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet[b]didnot want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.20 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.21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[c]becausehe will save his people from their sins.”22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet:23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”[d](which means “God with us”).24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.25 But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.    Matthew 1:18-25

There are several things we can appreciate about Joseph:

1  We can appreciate his relationship with God.   He could have divorced her and done so publicly and he could have insisted that she be humiliated and even had her life taken, but he did not. The Bible states the reason was that he was a “righteous” man.  His relationship with God impacted all areas of his life including how he treated others.

2  We can appreciate his attitude toward Mary.  He did not demand perceived justice.  He loved her and even in the confusion he still considered her and wanted to make the best of what he thought was a bad situation.

3.  His sensitivity toward God.  He not only was a righteous man, but he will listen to the angel and he was interested in following God’s will for his life.  He will change his plans because God has a better plan.  My Advent prayer is that I too will listen and be sensitive to the voice of God in my life.

4.  His obedience.  Here is where Joseph shines.  Many people can talk about their faith and love for God. Our love is not just talk and sentiment, it is shown by our obedience to God.

5.  His faith.  Joseph serves for all time as an example of faith.  He will have his plans changed to follow God’s will for his life.  He has faith to do God’s will even if it means he is ridiculed, even if he does not completely understand what all God is asking of him.  Joseph is for all time an example of what an obedient risk looks like.

Today, may each of us live lives of obedience to the will of God for our lives!


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