“And Joseph awoke from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took Mary as his wife, but kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a Son; and he called His name Jesus.” (Matthew 1:24–25, NASB95)
When Joseph got up from sleeping, he did as the Lord’s angel had commanded him. A true disciple obeys God immediately. They may have thought differently earlier but when God speaks, they have already chosen to change and they do!
Consider Joseph and his aching heart over his fiancé Mary’s pregnancy. While he loved her, he was stepping away from her graciously for her seeming infidelity. He was doing this out of purity and holiness. He was being godly and remaining true to his convictions, as he understood the words of God. No one should fault him for that.
And then God stepped in. When God speaks, it is so! This was something Joseph had lived his life by. The written words of God were his manual for life, to enjoy the abundant life he knew so well. So, when the angel said to him, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 1:20, NASB95) Joseph did just that!
Can you imagine turning 180 degrees in your decision and opinion in a moment? Did Mary know his intentions beforehand? She probably didn’t. Whether she did or not, we know he told her after the fact because we have the written account of these events.
When life grows difficult and choices have to be made, God looks into our hearts, that’s for sure. He knows the stuff we are made of. And, when His will is at stake and we are headed in the wrong direction, we can be sure that He will do whatever it takes to keep us on the right track, even if that means sending an angel with a divine message. We can trust God to honor our effort to please Him.
So today, before you despair of the decisions you have to make, trust that the God of the universe is watching and knows what you need to do to stay in line with His will and whim. If the choice you are making is off track, be assured He’s going to intervene!
Train Them Thursdays seeks to wed the Great Commission directive of Jesus with the practice He employed while on Earth. Each nugget is meant to encourage the reader with a “can-do” spirit to realize that discipleship is something each person is both capable of and empowered to accomplish. Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Executive Director of Eagles In Leadership, writes each thought and they flow out of decades of his tried and true field-testing in multiple settings from rural to inner city. He welcomes your comments below.