Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 1:18)
The plan was to have a big Thanksgiving meal with extended family — that plan was changed.
The plan was to celebrate multiple anniversaries together, well into old-age — that plan was changed.
The plan was to have a long tenure at a vocational position — that plan was changed.
The plan was to major in a specific discipline — that plan was changed.
Plans change as we well know these days!
Interesting that Matthew’s very first comment about the arrival of Jesus involved plans being changed.
- I doubt Mary ever planned to be the mother of Jesus.
- I bet Joseph’s plan was to go through the betrothal season, get married, and then have kids.
- I expect that both were anticipating a smooth, celebratory and fun engagement period.
Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way — with a lot of planned and unplanned factors impacting their journey!
On this side of the Christmas story, we might be quick to suggest an enthusiastic acceptance of all these changes; in the midst of these changes our enthusiasm may not have been so energetic!
How do we deal with the planned and unplanned? How did Mary and Joseph deal with the planned and unplanned? I wonder if that is why Matthew mentions Immanuel which means God with us?
Our series for this season is called “Un- Christmas: faith lessons in our journey with Jesus”
In the Christmas event we see all these “uns”:
- Planned and unplanned
- Comfortable and uncomfortable
- Provision and unprovision
- Seen and unseen
- Expected and unexpected
Our tendency is to want a faith that abides in the planned and comfortable, the provided, seen and expected. However “uns” are always part of the journey. Our Sunday morning focus this Christmas season will be gleaning lessons in faith through the “uns” experienced in Christ’s arrival. We hope you join us!
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