Have you ever stopped to wonder just what went through Joseph’s mind after finding out that Mary was pregnant? We know that initially he wants to divorce her, but then the angel appears to him and he is told to take her home as his wife. But what came next?
Mary’s body was changing and she was mindful that God was working a miracle in her life. She probably even felt the baby moving inside of her. There was no doubt in her mind that what the angel had told her was coming to pass.
But what about Joseph? I’m sure he had so many questions and can imagine him lying awake at night wondering if he had heard right. Really God? Is this really how this is all going to work? You are going to make us the laughing stock of the town, all the tongues will be wagging about what is happening. And my good reputation will be ruined! What will people think? How am I going to live this down?
There must have been days and nights where he rehearsed in his mind what the angel really said. He chose to take God at his word, walk by faith, and believe that what the angel had said was really going to happen! He had to move forward even when he couldn’t see where the road was leading.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, then we read in Luke 2:4-6 that Joseph went to Bethlehem “to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.” Joseph must have had questions again, leaving their home in Nazareth with Mary in her last days of her pregnancy, and heading to a place where they had no idea where they would stay. And yet he went, in obedience. If this had been recorded in Hebrews 11 it would read, by faith Joseph went to Bethlehem.
And still the story didn’t end there. After the baby was born, an angel appeared again and this time told him to go to Egypt instead of back to Nazareth. (Matthew 2:13-15) Really? Egypt? Joseph didn’t just head back to Nazareth, but instead he was obedient and “got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt”(vs 14). And there they stayed until once again an angel appeared and told Joseph it was safe to finally go home again.
Just as with Joseph, there are times in our lives when so many questions remain, when God asks us to get moving without showing us exactly where the path will lead. We may find ourselves doubting what God has said in his word when the situation we find ourselves in seems to contradict the promises he has given. But like Joseph, we need to walk by faith and move forward, believing that God will work out the details. Someone once said that you can’t steer a parked car; it has to be moving.
Have you been questioning the direction you know you should head? Do you want to see all the steps laid out, rather than just being willing to take the first step and walk by faith? Are you willing to trust God to do exactly what he promised?
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you that you are faithful and good all the time and I can trust that to be true in my life. Give me the courage to step out in faith even when questions remain and I can’t see how it will all work out. Amen.
Throughout this Day: Remind yourself today that God will see to completion the good work he began in your life (Philippians 1:6). Trust him to direct your path as you take that first step of obedience and walk by faith.
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