I think we sometimes forget about Joseph when we think of the Christmas story. At least I know I have overlooked him in the past.
Like every person involved in the Christmas story, God chose Joseph for a reason.
Just like Mary, we can learn a lot from Joseph.
Imagination time! Girls, it's your turn now...imagine yourselves as a man who is engaged to a girl who is pregnant. On top of that, the child isn't your biological child. People probably stare at you and turn there noses up. Who knows what her parents think of you.
You have an easy out though. Since she is pregnant, you can turn her in so she can be stoned because of her perceived "fornication". He could have fixed the mess he was in, but he didn't. Matthew 1:19 says, "And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly." He was looking out for her feelings and the shame she may have felt, that's why he had planned to send her away secretly. God had other plans though.
Just like Mary, an angel came to him and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins" (Matthew 1:20-12). Now Joseph is faced with some BIG news...the son of his soon to be wife would be the Savior of the world. Pressure!
Scripture continues to say, "Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 'Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel," which translated mean, "God with us.' And Joseph awoke from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took Mary as his wife, but kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son; and he called His name Jesus" (Matthew 1:22-25).
First, Joseph married Mary despite the bizarre situation they were in. Second, he honored God and His holiness by keeping Mary a virgin until after Jesus was born. That says A LOT. He obeyed God and followed through by honoring him. He took responsibility even though Jesus wasn't his biological son. Usually a dad will take responsibility, because that is his child, but Joseph was responsible despite the circumstance. I'm sure he was stared at and mocked, but he still did what God told him to do. Not only was he by Mary's side throughout her pregnancy and delivery, He was there throughout Jesus' life.
Are you recognizing a reoccurring theme? I am...obedience. Although God didn't choose you or me to be Jesus' mother or stepdad, He gives us PLENTY of opportunities to obey Him even when it may look ridiculous from our perspective.
If God is telling us to do something, we should do it in a heartbeat!
Check out this Christmas song from Joseph's perspective.
If you're following along in the reading plan, today whole book of Colossians.