My devotional today was about the dilemma Joseph found himself in when he found out that Mary, his betrothed, was with child. Most times during the Christmas season, most sermons talk about the exemplary obedient attitude of Joseph to God’s call not to abandon Mary. Reading about someone’s choices might be inspiring enough but if we were in the person’s shoes, would we readily make the same decision? People of this day and age break off their engagements over the flimsiest of excuses but in church, act as if they are the Josephs of the 21st century…talk is cheap.

Joseph’s story got me thinking. He was portrayed to be an upright man who obeyed his religious rites to the letter. He had found the one he wanted to spend the rest of his life with and having done his bid to be the ‘good guy,’ he was supposed to have a drama-free, glorious marriage ceremony; only to find out that the One he has judiciously served throughout his life beat him to it! His wife-to-be was carrying His son. He should have felt cheated and betrayed but he didn’t.

Despite his anguish, he never planned on punishing Mary for his pain. He thought of breaking things off quietly. Two thousand years down the line, people leak nude photos and videos just to get back at their exes for breaking their hearts. Times have really changed, haven’t they?

Anyway, back to my point. When he was finally let in on the loop about God’s great plan concerning the baby growing in Mary’s womb, he was courageous enough to keep Mary as his wife despite what the others might have thought of her. And he was honourable enough not to touch his wife until the Son was born. Today, abstaining from sex before marriage is painted to be a huge hurdle. And guess what, the people demanding this from their partners may be the most active members in their churches. Talk of double standards!

What am I driving at? You may have served God with everything you’ve got, holding nothing back and when it came to God granting your one heart desire, things didn’t quite go the way you expected. It might be a heart-wrenching experience but in your darkest moment, always remind yourself that He who has brought you this far is faithful to bring you to your expected end.

God is always up to something; sometimes His ways are unconventional and inexplicable but you have to admit that when all hope is lost and God pulls one of His wow moves, you are glad you didn’t give up on Him.

God knew Joseph and Mary had good hearts and that is why He trusted them to be His earthly parents. His plans may interrupt our own but if we let Him have His way, in His own time He’d reward in ways our minds could never fathom.

Until the world ends, the story of Jesus can never be told without the humble duo, Joseph and Mary. That in itself is a lasting legacy to have.

When God is your rival, you never lose your partner.

Have a merry Christmas, everyone! J


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