Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Monday, December 27, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
I will tell of the Lord’s unfailing love.
I will praise the Lord for all he has done.
I will rejoice in his great goodness to Israel,
which he has granted according to his mercy and love.
He said, “They are my very own people.
Surely they will not betray me again.”
And he became their Savior.
In all their suffering he also suffered,
and he personally rescued them.
In his love and mercy he redeemed them.
He lifted them up and carried them
through all the years.
Monday, December 20, 2010
Saturday, December 18, 2010
A young maiden named Mary (like so many others her age) was pledged to a sound and steady man as soon as she came of age; Joseph. A building contractor during an age of empire building would be a safe provider – a good catch. While she was but betrothed and still living at home, it was learned that she was preggers. What a waste! She’d had so much to look forward too…
Now all knew that Joseph was not the child of her fiancé, so he had every legal right (and many would have said that he had every moral obligation) to stone her to death for the insult to his pride and the honor of his lineage. But Joseph loved God and people more than he loved status, so he planned to quietly end the engagement and send her away. But just when he completed forming this face-saving plan, he passed out!
While he was thus open, an angel of our Lord spoke to him. “Don’t be afraid of what others say – you are from a long line of kings. This child in her is not of some adulterous illicit union, but is of your God Himself through His Holy Spirit! She will bear The Son, and as His earthly father and caretaker, it will be up to you to name Him and so shape Him. Name Him “God is salvation” (Joshua or as they say today, Jesus), because that is what He will be for His people.”
I’m sure Joe remembered what the prophet had said: “Behold! The virgin shall conceive and bear a boy-child which shall be called 'God is with us' – Emmanuel.” Did he wonder at the name change, or was he overwhelmed by the bigger picture?
As soon as he came to, he got up and did as he was told - he finalized the transaction with the last dowry payment and took her into his home as his wife and partner. When the babe was born, father Joseph held Him with joyous love and awe as his very own and named Him for all the world to know – Jesus.
Retelling of Matthew 1:18-25