“She will give birth to a son and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save people from their sins.” - Matthew 1:21
In Luke 1:26-38 an angel of the Lord came to Mary and told her she was highly favored with God and would conceive a son named Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit. At this time Mary was a virgin engaged to a man named Joseph, and an engagement could only be broken through death or divorce. Joseph knew that, if it was discovered that his bride-to-be was pregnant before they were wed, great shame and ridicule would be cast onto them, and for that reason he wanted to pursue a quiet divorce. He believed that a divorce was the best choice he could make for him and Mary, but only God's guidance could help him reach the best choice.
One night an angel of the Lord came to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” ( Matthew 1:20-21). The angel offered Joseph comfort and answers that he needed to move forward. The angel’s message revealed an important truth, that Jesus was both God and human, and that his name means “the Lord saves.” When Joseph awoke, he did what the angel of the Lord commanded him to do and took Mary as his wife. This action revealed Joseph's faithfulness and obedience to the Lord in valuing his commands more than the approval of others.
I often find myself living for the world and the approval of others, just like Joseph was tempted to do in this situation. It can be such an easy trap to fall into and oftentimes a lot easier to live for the world! We must continually seek out the Lord’s guidance in all areas of our lives so that we can live in obedience and a fulfilled life that can only come from the Lord. So seek first the Kingdom and the Lord will make a way, just like He did for Joseph.
1. Sometimes we avoid doing what is right because we worry what others might think, like Joseph did. Where is God asking you for your obedience right now?
2. God's guidance helped lead Joseph to make the best decision. Where can you ask God for guidance in your life?
Lord, thank You so much for Your guidance in our lives and Your magnificent plan for us. You have always provided, from the beginning of time, and You created such a beautiful life of love and redemption through Your son Jesus. My prayer is to always look to You and listen for Your guidance as I walk through this life so that I can best serve You. Amen.
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