Imagine this; you have been working really hard at work and have not taken a break at all since the beginning of the year. About eight months into the year, you decide you just need a break, so you talk to your boss about it and they agree to grant you some time off.
As the weeks go by, the excitement builds up and you are already building up a list of things you will do while on holiday right from day one.
Finally that long awaited day arrives and that morning you quickly notice that there is a thick blanket of fog in the air. You literally can not see beyond a few metres from where you are and as you get to the airport your fears are confirmed… all flights have been cancelled!!! It suddenly dawns on you!! You might not get to do all the things you were hoping to do while on holiday!! You might not even go!!
Sometimes in life, things do not go the way we plan and life seems to go on its own course, different from the one we would have chosen for ourselves. In my view, the Christmas story, as it is popularly known, is an example of a story that didn’t go as planned.. well at least for Mary and Joseph.
What we know about Mary and Joseph is that they were engaged to be married. A modern day Mary would have been picking out wedding venues, perhaps she would have already “Said Yes to the Dress” and counting down days to her big day. We are told that during this time, Mary got a visit from an Angel declaring that she would give birth to the Messiah who would save people from their sins.
Mary and Joseph were not officially married yet. What would people around her say if they found out she was having a baby out of wedlock? What about all their big plans for their lives? What were people going to say about Joseph? Surely this would be disgraceful to her parents!! This was a mess!! Why would God interrupt their lives like this?
Well we do know that Mary gladly submitted to God’s plan and the Saviour of the universe was born. Yes, I can imagine her early days with Joseph were nowhere near what she had envisaged but God was with her and Joseph and led them every step of the way.
Sometimes when we give our lives to God, our lives seem to take off in scary and unfamiliar paths and quite frankly God seems to be interrupting our plans and making us uncomfortable in the process. Let us be encouraged by the story of Mary and Joseph as well as other stories in the bible that remind us that God sees the bigger picture, can do incredible things through us and will get us through those scary phases of our lives. Above all, may we find encouragement from the fact that God can be trusted.
Like Mary, may we find the courage to respond as she did in Luke 1:38 and say, “Here I am, the Lord’s humble servant. As you have said, let it be done to me.”