Tuesday, December 23, 2008

An Adopted Son...



This Christmas we have been reading a little devotional book called Immanuel: Praying the Names of God through the Christmas Season. It has been wonderful to meditate on various aspects of Jesus' name, birth and life as we prepare to really celebrate Christmas as a family here in Uganda. As we've been reading and praying together as a family, one person in particular has really struck me. I mean, the kind of struck where you just sit and think about it for a long time. The person is Joseph.

I wonder what it would be like to hold the very Son of God in my arms. In fact, Joseph would have been the very first person to hold Jesus period, even before Mary herself! When my three sons were born, I was privileged to be the one to catch each of them as they came out into the world, but I had doctors there helping me. Even if I missed or the baby slipped through my hands (they come out slick!), there was an extra pair of hands there with mine. But Joseph was in it alone! Talk about pressure! How do you catch the Son of God? I had nurses there to show me where to cut the cord, and of course they took care of cleaning the babies properly. Joseph did not have any of these things either, and I don't think that men were typically "in" on births in Israel so he could have had very little idea of exactly what to do. Actually, there were midwives who normally handled these things, but cows in a barn are not very good midwives. I can just picture Mary there telling Joseph what to do, Joseph scared to death, tears and laughter. What an emotional experience that must have been, to catch, cut and clean the very Son of God Himself! The humility of God will forever stun me just as greatly as His sovereignty.

One other thought has struck me within the whole Joseph side of things. He bore the public "shame" of taking into his home what was thought to be an "ill-begotten" baby boy. But then he went further than this, Joseph in all reality adopted the Son of God into his own family, he himself becoming the boy's father. Growing up I never quite thought about this, and it never really hit home until I heard a message by my friend Justin on Joseph. But what really amazes me is this- could Joseph have known that it would be through this very Son that he was adopting that he himself would be adopted by God who would become His very own adopted Father? I don't think Joseph could have grasped this apart from faith, but how amazing are God's ways!

I hope you all have a very blessed Christmas as you celebrate the birth of the one who was born to die for the Glory and unveiling of the Father, the one who has promised, "I will not leave you as orphans (Jn. 14:18)" because He Himself has died that we might be justified from sin and adopted into the family of God. We are orphans no more.

1 comment:

The Matthews said...

Thanks for your notes always!! They are so great, and it's so nice to get a little peek into your lives over there! We miss you greatly! Loving the new uploaded photos! Ya'll look great. I especially love that Isaiah is in shorts!! Since it's snowing here and we are under a winter strom watch :) they're expecting up to 7inches of snow by tomorrow! YIKES..I'm dreaming of a white christmas is going to be the reality! Love you guys and a very MERRY CHRISTMAS (or as Avery would say merry mismis)