Many things had to line up before this Christmas story could go according to plan. We’ve seen how Zechariah, Elizabeth, John the Baptist and Mary all played their parts perfectly. But now Joseph could foul up the event. Joseph had to find the courage to marry Mary, which may not sound like such a brave thing to do, but in an honor/shame culture it might have been the end of him, or at least the end of his reputation. He would be known forever as the man who had married a whore (is that too strong a word?).
So, once again this whole salvation project depended on the answer of a human. It wasn’t only Mary who had to say, “Let it be” in this story: it was Joseph as well. If he hadn’t said yes, if the project hadn’t gone forward, and I, being the good Pharisaic preacher that I am, might be nagging you to do better at keeping the Torah this Sunday, I mean, Sabbath.
Tomorrow we see Joseph’s response to the Angel (yes, he’s the visitor I’ve been telling you about). As we listen perhaps we will see where we need to trust God’s plan and make more room for Jesus in our lives, like Joe. Even better, I pray for us all to see how God’s plan for saving the world includes little ol’ YOU!
Here’s this Good News. When you make room for Jesus in your plans, you discover you’ve been part of God’s plan all along.
Tomorrow, we have some special music planned so I do hope you can come. Besides, it’s just not the same without YOU!