Thursday, December 18, 2014
"Our God is the God of the unexpected. A few things could be more unexpected than the King of heaven being born in a stable"
“There is nothing so secular that it cannot be sacred, and that is one of the deepest messages of the incarnation.”
Gospel Text: (MT 1:18-25)
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about.
When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph,
but before they lived together,
she was found with child through the Holy Spirit.
Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man,
yet unwilling to expose her to shame,
decided to divorce her quietly.
Such was his intention when, behold,
the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said,
“Joseph, son of David,
do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.
For it is through the Holy Spirit
that this child has been conceived in her.
She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus,
because he will save his people from their sins.”
All this took place to fulfill
what the Lord had said through the prophet:
Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son,
and they shall name him Emmanuel,
which means “God is with us.”
When Joseph awoke,
he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him
and took his wife into his home.
He had no relations with her until she bore a son,
and he named him Jesus.
Many of us know George Bailey as the main character in the classic film It’s a Wonderful Life. This beloved movie tells the story of Bailey’s crisis of faith. When a rival steals his bank deposit, Bailey faces the prospect of imprisonment and comes close to throwing himself off of a bridge. But an angel named Clarence appears and shows him what life would have been like for other people if he had never been born. Seeing the positive impact he has had on so many, Bailey changes his mind.
Joseph also went through a moment of crisis. Hearing about Mary’s surprise pregnancy, he must have wondered what God was up to. How could this happen to the most virtuous woman in Israel? He was ready to give up the whole idea, but he too had a visit from an angel, who convinced him to trust in God’s plan. Imagine how different things would have been if Joseph had said no!
What would the world look like if you had never been born? Perhaps it seems like a pointless reflection, but there are people who count on you in this world. And not because of what you do for them but because of who you are. It may be your friendly manner, your smile, or your patience that puts them at ease.
You are one way they have—sometimes the only way—of meeting Christ in the flesh.
Posted by Joe Reciniello at 6:05 AM