“When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit; and her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 1:18-20).
Like the Joseph of the Old Testament, this Joseph was also a great dreamer. And just as Joseph welcomed his family to Egypt to save them from the famine, this Joseph would have to flee at night with Mary and the baby Jesus to Egypt to save him from the mass slaughter of Herod the Great. Again as Joseph was industrious and chaste in the house of Potiphar so was this Joseph industrious (being a carpenter) and chaste.
Even though Joseph had already made up his mind on what to do concerning Mary, he found the faith to obey the voice of the Angel taking as a message from God. God was making a very huge demand on him. Note that he wasn’t just going to be the guardian of Mary, by this marriage, he was accepting a life of celibacy despite having to live with her.
Joseph deserves a lot of heroic commendation for his Faith. By obeying the Angel, Joseph showed that he believed in the possibility of God taking flesh in the womb of a person. Joseph believed strongly that with God all things are possible.
The role of Joseph in the life of Jesus proves that every child needs a father; one who is there to provide, protect and train. Today is another day to say a big thank you to our Fathers; the men who were there for us from cradle, the men who bore the harsh heat of the sun and worked all day just to put food on our tables, the men who were our first teachers in the faith, the men who disciplined us when we went astray. Fathers are not necessarily biological. Are you a Father? What kind of Father are you?
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, bless our Fathers; biological fathers, foster fathers and even our Reverend fathers. Amen.
Bible Study: Jeremiah 23:5-8, Ps. 72, Matthew 1:18-24).