I can’t imagine all the thoughts that flooded their hearts and minds at this time. They had to wrestle through questions of faithfulness, commitment and trust. They had to believe on such a different level in each other and in God. They had to deal with the glaring looks and stares and from friends and family alike, trying to explain the unexplainable. They had to prepare for a baby and a wedding. They had to look beyond what was convenient and deal with what was necessary. These are just a few of the things Mary and Joseph had to move through separately and together.
Even though they both had supernatural encounters with God, they still had earthly issues that complicated their lives they had to face. Sometimes the act of God makes life more challenging instead of easy. I’m really not quite sure why it is that all we Christians seem to think life should be easy? In fact, I’m not sure that I know of any Biblical character that had it easy, simple or without challenge. When God moved and sent His Son by choosing Mary, her world was rocked and so was Joseph’s. Things were not going how they planned, I can assure you! And yet, revealed in a simple verse, we see their commitment to the life God had chosen for them and the commitment to each other as they had chosen each other:
“in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. Luke 2:5
Joseph had to be a very strong man, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Their relationship had to quickly go beyond comfort and ease to doing things that were right and beneficial for all of humanity. They had to be willing to embrace experiences they were given by God that no one else could understand so that all the world could be embraced by the Son of God and Man. they willingly walked into an unknown future but they did it together. They went to be counted together as a family. They went to be registered because Joseph still chose Mary.
The journey of life is going to be full of things that may never make sense to us on earth. We may have all kinds of hopes and dreams that may be placed within us, birthed through us, and eventually die later. But from this verse, I feel like there is something crucial to realize: They had to face it together. There were certain things beyond their control. Certain things that were certainly not planned. Certain things that totally changed everything about them. But one thing stayed the same: they were in it together. That’s not just a nice thing to do it’s a way of life. That choice alone changed everything for everyone.
Vision 2 Hear
in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child.
What kind of challenges do you face at this point in life?
What plans has God disrupted by circumstance or providence?
How has your belief in God, people or even yourself been challenged, questioned or deepened through those changes?
What is God calling out of you? What character qualities is God asking you to live out?
Who do you need to choose to be “registered with”?
What kind of commitment, faith, hope, trust do you need to instill in others? How can God use you to do that?