2019 Advent Devotional – Day 14


Matthew 1:24-25 – Joseph obeyed God, and Jesus was born

When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus. obey

Salvation - Walton United Church, Oakville, Ontario

This most unassuming of passages is Matthew’s announcement of the birth of Jesus. Unlike the description in Luke, Matthew’s account is not crowded with dazzling angels and excited shepherds, but rather appears in isolated terms, mentioning only the Holy Family. 

There is a somberness in Matthew’s narrative, that hints at the difficulty of these circumstances for Joseph and the tension between what Joseph expected from his betrothal to Mary and what has taken place instead. 

Moreover, the description of these events emphasizes Joseph’s obedience to God and his adherence to the instructions of the angel, despite the difficulties and shame this involved. In obeying God however, Joseph played his part in God’s plan, and helped to bring about God’s promise to love the world.

In Matthew’s account of Jesus’ birth then, we are reminded of—and can be inspired by—the significance of our own obedience and faithfulness to God, even in the most perplexing and unexpected of circumstances.

Supreme God,
Help me to obey your teaching for how to live and to trust your purpose for my life. Though I may find myself in difficult and unexpected circumstance, strengthen my obedience to your word. When I am uncertain about events or the direction of my life, steady me with your reassuring love. Lead me forward to bring glory to your name and share your love in the world. Amen.

Thank you for joining us on this prayerful path through Advent.
Blessings and best wishes for 2020.

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