As we begin a new year and say good bye to this past Christmas season, we need to revisit Jesus, Mary and Joseph one more time. When we consider what happened to them, we recognize what a confusing and complicated situation they confronted. Yet they did it. Think about it. Mary is unexpectedly pregnant. The child is God’s son and our savior. Joseph is not the Father, but a chosen protector. But what made all this mix-up work is trust. They simply trusted that God actually had a plan and they were a part of it. If God chose them for His plan, then God would protect them. God doesn’t do harm to His created friends.
Even so, trusting in God doesn’t always mean smooth sailing for those trusting. In fact it can mean the opposite. Consider Joseph, Mary and Jesus and their beginning years together.
At the end of her pregnancy, Mary rode a donkey to Bethlehem. This had to be a rough ride for a pregnant woman almost at full term. Then at birth, Jesus slept on straw, because the Inns had no vacancies.
Exhausted from all these hardships, Joseph discovers in a dream that Herod wants to kill Jesus. Making a mad dash to Egypt, Joseph hides his family from this enraged king. We don’t know if Joseph spoke Egyptian or how he built up his carpentry trade, but we do know he never said “Okay Lord we trusted you, now when do you kick in and help?” Instead all three remained faithful and trusting, and later came to settle in friendly Galilee.
Like Mary, Jesus, and Joseph we are all asked to cooperate in God’s plan, and sometimes against all odds. This is a good message to carry into 2014. Whenever we feel disappointed or unhappy in our present moments, because things are not happening according to our plan, we need to remember the present moments of Joseph, Jesus and Mary. They got through their bad times, because they trusted in God’s nearness.
If nothing else Christmas stands out strongly as a reminder that we are God’s investment. He wants none of us lost, only saved. Even when our situation seems impossible, God can make it possible.
My suggestion for a New Year’s resolution is simple. Never judge a bad situation by its appearance. Instead see it through faith and know God is near. For God also has a New Year’s resolution, it is to save us, love us and help us grow ever closer to Him.
With these two resolutions working together, 2014 has the potential of becoming a very happy and blessed year. To all my friends “Happy New Year!”
PS… One last word, in 2014 share this blog with one friend!