Matthew 1:18-20, 24 (NASB®)
Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly. But . . . an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. . . .” Joseph awoke from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took Mary as his wife.
This story is so familiar that it’s easy to miss the shock value of it. Suppose your fiancé comes to you and says a baby is on the way. You are a godly man, and you thought she was a godly woman. You don’t want to humiliate her further, so you call off your engagement. Then an angel tells you in a dream not to worry, this is a God thing. Most of us would spend the following months crying out to God in prayer and immersed in deep conversations with people we trust. But Joseph “awoke . . . and took Mary as his wife.” Does your imagination of cooperating with God include shattered dreams? Because this event completely upended every dream Mary and Joseph had. Mary had a baby a little too soon, and Joseph became a borrowed dad. Our stories probably will not be as dramatic as this one, but let’s be prepared if God asks us to stand in awkward places in order to allow His purposes to come forward in our lives.
THINK ABOUT IT
God has a plan, and He needs people who are willing to cooperate with Him, even when it may require them to stand in awkward places. Have you ever stood in an awkward place for Him? What was the outcome?
Heavenly Father, You are the Creator and the author of my story. There is nothing in my life that has escaped Your sight. You not only know my past, but You are also aware of what lies ahead. Help me to honor You and follow You with a yielded heart and a joyful spirit. Living alongside You is the only way for me to be satisfied. Protect me from the temptation to walk in my own strength. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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