December 22ND - Day 26 | Promises: An Advent Family Devotional
“18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 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. 21 She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins. 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:23 “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). 24 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, 25 but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.”
- Matthew 1:18-25
What’s the toughest decision you have ever had to make?
Staying or moving? Dating or breaking up? Rocky road or chocolate? What do you do when you have a difficult choice to make? Do you write out a list of pros and cons? Do you go with your gut or does logic rule the day?
Joseph knew he had a tough decision to make. He found out the woman to whom he was betrothed, Mary, was pregnant. He felt so betrayed. He knew he wasn’t the father and couldn’t believe he was forced into this position. One thing was clear, the wedding was off. As Joseph thought about his options, he came to a decision. He loved Mary, and even though he was angry, he could never make a public spectacle out of her. He wouldn’t let her perceived unfaithfulness be a harm to her or the baby. He would write her a certificate of divorce and handle it quietly, hoping to move on with his life.
As Joseph drifted off to sleep, God sent an angel with a message for him. The angel filled Joseph in on the realities of the situation. Mary hadn’t been unfaithful to him. In fact, the child she would bear was God’s Son, and Joseph would have the task of marrying her and raising Jesus. As Joseph awoke, I’m sure he was overwhelmed, but he faithfully obeyed and took on the enormous task of raising the Son of God, accepting all of the ridicule that would come from others who didn’t know the whole story. That day, he brought Mary home as his wife, determined to obey the Lord.
As you hang your ornament, remember, obeying God is the toughest thing you will never regret.