Archives

Sarah’s Story

The next woman I would like to write about reminds me of my DD. She and her brother are what I term “the microwave generation”….they don’t have any concept what it is like to wait for anything. I hear from her more times than I really want to the phrase, “I can’t wait that long! It’s too long!” I can imagine that was a key phrase that God heard from Sarai as well.

The book of Genesis gives us an insight on this woman of faith. She was married to a man named Abram and she was barren. She had no children. She and Abram lived in Haran until her husband got a call from the Lord to leave his homeland and to travel to Canaan, where the Lord would make him into a great nation. I am sure that this poor woman spent a lot of time riding on a camel, camping out in tents, not knowing where in the world the Lord was taking them, but following her husband to the ends of the Earth.

She went through a lot, too though, that her husband asked of her. Genesis 12:10-20 talks about a journey they had to take to Egypt during a famine where Abram asked his wife to pretend she was his sister, so that he wouldn’t be killed because of her beauty. So she was taken in by the Pharoah and Abram was treated well, but ummmm….the Lord was not too pleased with this decision they made. He struck the Pharoah’s household with serious diseases until the Pharoah realized that he had brought in Abram’s wife for his own! Now, Abram didn’t ask her to do this once, but twice! (see Genesis 20)

Okay, enough about Abram’s sin. But through all this time, Sarai was still barren. No children, so how could it be possible for Abram to become a great nation without any children? What do you think, ladies? Is it time to take things out of God’s hands and do it ourself? Well, Sarai thought it was. It just wasn’t happening as God had planned, so how could it hurt to try it all by myself? So we move on to Genesis 16, where Sarai does just this. Well she couldn’t have babies, but her servant Hagar could! So she tells her husband, “The LORD has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her.” (Gen. 16:2) What? Sarai is giving her husband permission to sleep with another woman? Is she crazy? The thought of MY DH sleeping with another woman…I don’t think I could handle that. And why is the blame on the Lord? Is he REALLY the one keeping her from having children? So Abram agreed and Hagar got pregnant. And guess what….Mrs. Abram was not the least bit happy about this. Why? It was her idea, right? But no……. Sarai comes back with the big one…THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT. “Sarai said to Abram, “You are responsible for the wrong I am suffering. I put my servant in your arms, and now that she knows she is pregnant, she despises me. May the LORD judge between you and me.” (Gen. 16:5) Do you ever make a decision to do something then realize what a huge mistake this was when you get the results? I think Sarai did. But there, working as her maid, was a woman who bore her husband a son when she could not. She was probably very hurt and thought that God had forgotten his promise.

But God kept reiterating his promise to Abram and even changed his name to Abraham, and God changed Sarai’s name to Sarah. They were 100 and 90 years old respectively. Abraham and Sarah, who were well past childbearing age, both laughed that they would conceive and bear a child in their old age, but God did keep his promise. Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son, and they called him Isaac, which means “laughter”.

What can we learn from Sarah? I think the most important thing is that when God makes a promise, He will keep it. Has God ever made a promise to you? Has He fulfilled that promise yet? If the answer is no, then we continue to wait. To my DH, it probably seemed like God would never change me into the wife that I was intended to be, but he waited patiently, never once thinking about leaving me or cheating on me. God’s ways are the best ways. And His timing is never the same way as ours.

What would you have done in Sarah’s shoes? Would you have taken matters into your own hand? It’s easy to say, “Nah, I would never do that”, but I bet if we got that nagging feeling of “I can’t wait that long! It’s too long!”, might we be thinking of invitro fertilization? adoption? a surrogate mother like Sarah did? Take some notes from Sarah and file it in your memory banks. History does tend to repeat itself, but if we remember her plight when we face a long, hard road, maybe it will comfort us to think of her happiness when God’s promise WAS fulfilled. Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” And she added, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.” (Gen 21:6-7)

Lies Women Believe….: Chapter 1 – Truth or Consequences

This chapter begins by taking us back to the Garden of Eden.  Back to our sister, Eve and the deception she encountered with the serpent.   Satan knew he would have to subtly trick Adam and Eve into doubting God’s intention for them…. by using a campaign aimed at appearing reasonable and not anti-God.   Lies, half truths, and cleverly disguised falsehoods were all it took to cause Eve to doubt and to take the fruit and eat it.

God had given them everything.   Everything in the garden was theirs … BUT one thing… the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.   God knew if they ate from that tree, they would be eternally separated from Him.

I loved this quote from her on p. 31  “Satan promises the best, but pays with the worst; he promises honor and pays with disgrace; he promises pleasure, and pays with pain; he promises profit, and pays with loss; he promises life, and pays with death.”  (Puritan pastor Thomas Brooks Isn’t that so true?   Satan is no longer just a serpent…  he appears to us in so many different ways… he’s so hard to see sometimes…. but if we are armed with God’s truth, we can see him every time.

As women, we are prone to fall for Satan’s deception.   Oil of Olay will get rid of all those lines and wrinkles…. melt 10 pounds in 10 minutes! … I am sure you can name many, many deceptions that are thrown at women on a daily basis.

In believing something, put it to the test of these questions…

1.  What is the message here?

2.  Is it really true?

3.  Am I being deceived by a way of thinking that is contrary to the Truth?

When we don’t consider these, we can move from being deceived to being in bondage over it…. when we listen to a lie, we then dwell on the lie…ponder it, think it over… hmmm…. when we dwell on the lie, then we start to believe the lie (Genesis 3:6a) and when we believe the lie, we act on it and we are caught, hook , line and sinker.  (Genesis 3:6b-7)

How do we get free from the bondage of lies?  She lists several steps…

1. Identify the area(s) of bondage or sinful behavior.

2. Identify the lie(s) at the root of that bondage or behavior.

3. Replace the lie(s) with the Truth.

Next week, we will hit on the first of the lies women believe… lies about God.

Sexual sin: the woman caught in adultery

Another article i wrote in 2008 for during my hiatus.

I love Jesus so much for his forgiveness and his love for sinners. I am one of those sinners who does not deserve his love, but he gives it to me anyway. This is the story that I used to confess to my FH when we started dating. I wanted to get out in the open my past, to give him the opportunity to take me or leave me. I am happy to say that he took me!

This story is based in John 8. This story takes place in Jerusalem. Jesus had just returned from the Mount of Olives and went to the temple to teach. The Pharisees were trying ever so hard to find a reason to accuse him of false prophesy or blastphemy. So here they come into the temple with a woman in tow who was caught in the act of adultery. Now my question is, “Where is the MAN who was in the act of adultery as well?”, but the Pharisees were SO into the letter of the Law, the woman could have been the easiest catch. Who knows….maybe she was having an affair with one of them? But I digress….

So here is this poor woman. Who knows what condition she was in being “caught in the act” and here she is, humiliated, in front of all these men in the temple. The Pharisees commanded that the Law of Moses be enacted on her, which would have meant being stoned to death. What is Jesus doing during all of this? Stooped over on the ground writing in the dirt. What in the world would the Savior of the World be doodling in the dust? The Bible doesn’t say, but thinking he isn’t paying attention to them, the Pharisees keep going on.

Finally Jesus looks up at them and tells them, “He who is without sin amongst you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” (John 8: 7 NASB) and he goes right on writing in the dirt. Now these Pharisees must have seen and known what Jesus was writing because one by one, they turned and walked away. When Jesus looked up, he saw only the woman and himself and he asked her where they all went. She told him no one had condemned her, to which he replies, “Neither do I condemn you; go. From now on sin no more.” (John 8: 11 NASB) You see, the only one left there without sin was the Son of Man. Just like I said in my last blog entry, Jesus came into the world to save the world, not to condemn the world. So he forgave the woman and told her to sin no more. He gave her another chance. Did she take advantage of it? We don’t know.

But you know, it is really easy to sin. It was really easy for Adam and Eve from the beginning of time, so why would it be any different for any of us? Sometimes in life when our marriage isn’t going right to us, it is so easy to look for an easy fix…an affair like this woman was involved in. We don’t know much about her at all. Was she married? Was she having an affair with a married man? Was she looking for love in all the wrong places? All we know about her was she was caught having sex with another man. Dear ones, there is nothing that God cannot fix in your marriage. There are times when we need to go to our Abba Father with all our tears and sorrows, not to another man to fulfill our needs. Christ is sufficient for us all. If you have defiled your marriage bed, you can be redeemed by your Father in heaven. Do as Christ told this woman, “go and sin no more.” If you are even considering stepping outside of your marriage bed to meet needs, don’t even go there. Go to the Lord in prayer. Ask Him to help you. Ask Him to help fulfill your needs. Ask Him to help you change to be the wife he intended for your DH. Our time table is not always God’s, so be patient. God’s timing is perfect.

And yes, there is another story coming….in the Lord’s time.

Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free

I am so grateful for my Ladies bible study at church.  We meet just about every Thursday evening, and this is something that I know I need.  There have been days that I  have heard Satan say, “You are just too tired to go.  It will be okay to miss just one meeting.” – I go anyways and have always been blessed beyond all measure.   Sometimes I hear my husband say something similar to this…. “Oh, I didn’t think you were going tonight.”   Why would I not go?  I NEED THIS.

Anyways, over the next few weeks, I will be introducing each of the chapters in the series we are studying.  The book is called “Lies Women Believer and the TRUTH that Sets Them Free” by Nancy Leigh DeMoss.   I will admit this is a TOUGH book to read, especially if you gloss over the topics and the lies and say, “I don’t believe that.  This isn’t for me.”  Trust me, I already have done that…. I glossed over the chapters and said… nope.  nope.  not me.  nope.  oh definitely not…. See, Satan is already trying to convince me that I don’t believe his lies.  While there are definitely some that I know I don’t believe, I prayed to God to open my eyes to the lies that I cannot tell that I am believing….  and already in chapter 2, I’ve found one I didn’t know I was there.

The leader of our group also gave us an assignment…. you don’t have to report it to the class here, but I do challenge you to do this as well.   Like I said earlier, there have already been “this is not me” moments, even when I got this assignment, but again, I have been praying that God would reveal to me the lie that holds me in bondage that i need to be set free from.  The assignment won’t make any sense unless you read the book, so do this if you follow along with me.

Here is the assignment:

you will need a letter sized envelope, and 2 index cards (lined or unlined, doesn’t matter).   On the front of card #1, identify the area(s) of bondage or sinful behavior in your life.  On the back of card #1, identify the lie associated to that bondage.    On the front of card #2, replace that lie with the Truth… identify the truth in scripture, memorize and meditate on the Truth and believe the Truth.  On the back of card #3, act on the Truth…list steps that you will take.

If in my quiet time I am made aware of the Lie that binds me, and I finish this assignment myself, I will reveal it here.   You do not need to reveal yours, unless you want to.   So download the book, borrow it from the library, buy it at Half Price Books or Amazon.com …. let’s try to get started next week with Chapter 1.  :-)

God created the first nympho: Eve

While I am on hiatus, I am bringing back some of my bible studies i did on CN. 

Lately, my mind has been on legacies. What kind of legacies will I leave behind for the future generations, not only in my family, but also in life. I’ve been a Sunday school teacher for children for many years which I truly love. I hope I have had a small part in molding a child’s life and belief in God and the Savior in Jesus Christ. I’ve taught in public schools and in preschools. I hope that in some way, though religion is being tossed out of schools faster than trash on the last day of school at your local high school, I am through my own walk, planting the love of God in someone else’s mind. I know I look back and wish there was a way to say thank you for people who were just in my life as examples, that even though they may not know it, they really showed me through just being who they are that God loves me and I am really grateful that He put them in my life.

This topic has brought my mind back to the First Lady of the Universe…Eve. When you think about Eve what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Yeah, I bet in two seconds flat, that incident with the serpent popped right up, didn’t it? Can you imagine if somewhere down the road, someone thought about you, and all they remembered about you was your sin? I would hate that! I have to ask Eve about that someday when I meet her in heaven. There is so much more to this past First Lady, so let’s see if we can learn something from her today.

Genesis 2 introduces us to Eve. Adam had a problem. All the animals in the garden had a mate. There were male and female of every living thing in the Garden of Eden, but a suitable helper could not be found for Adam. (Gen. 2:20b) It must have been a pretty lonely job, and a pretty hard one at that. But God realized that it was not good for Adam to be alone, so He caused Adam to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. (Gen. 2:21-22) That’s pretty incredible if you ask me. Man is always missing something that only woman can fill. So when he awoke, he called her woman, since she was taken from man.

So there they were, in the garden, naming animals together, naked and not having a care in the world. Why would they? God provided every good thing that they needed, but he did provide one rule. That should be pretty easy, right? Only one rule? Gosh, I feel like I am trying to follow so many rules daily, one rule would be easy, right? Okay, can’t talk on my cellphone in the school zone….check. I can make a right turn on red, but I have to stop first….check. Can’t say the Lord’s name in vain….I am at about 98% on that one (sorry, even I am not perfect) I definitely don’t steal….wait, oh yeah, I did steal a tootsie roll from my daughter’s candy bag….oops. But they are SO GOOD, right? It should be okay, right?

Okay, so rules aren’t as easy to keep as we think. But Adam and Eve had only one rule…do not eat from the tree in the center of the garden. That should be easy. There are so many other trees with fruit in it that is good to eat, that shouldn’t be too hard, right? But strolling near that tree one day, maybe looking at the fruit, maybe it is pretty to the sight, maybe it had some morning dew dripping off it that made it look really juicy and appealing….we just don’t know what triggered it, but Satan took that opportunity to entice Eve. The serpent was a very sly animal. He would say to Eve, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”….(Psst. Serpent….he said only ONE tree…but the serpent knew what God said.) But Eve answered him back, saying “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’ “ Wait, wait, wait…I don’t remember God saying that…let me thumb my way back to see what God really told them….God said, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.” Do you see the difference in God’s rule and what Eve said God said? He didn’t say that you couldn’t TOUCH it, you would die….He said if you EAT it, you would die. There is a difference. It’s kind of like when I was in my late teens, early 20’s….being unmarried then, but sexually active, I always thought, “If I got pregnant, my parents would KILL ME.” Of course, they wouldn’t really kill me. They might be disappointed in me, but I’m not losing my life over it, but isn’t that what we girls think? I can’t tell you how many teens I have heard say “Don’t tell….my parents will kill me.” Where does that come from? Well, Eve was no different. God was her creator, and she knew that if she just thought about that fruit, she was dead meat. But the serpent goes on suggesting to her, “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Ooooooooh. Now there is appeal….. (hehe)….I will be like God. When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.

Wait, wait, wait, wait….They’ve been naked all along and there was nothing wrong with it. Why is there a modesty problem now? What all of the sudden has made them think that nudity is bad? This is where I got my problem from. I, too, admit to modesty problems. I have never liked to see my body nude from, well, I couldn’t tell you how long ago it was. I don’t know when it became an issue. I kind of envy my daughter. She thinks nothing of being naked. She’ll get naked when the doorbell rings, actually running around the house in panties when there are guests in the house. But her Mama, I just can’t sleep naked with the man of my dreams. Why? Eve’s legacy…that’s it. It must be Eve’s legacy.

The next part is why we are called children of God. Cause when you make a bad choice, and Papa comes around, you run and hide. That’s exactly what they did. God knew what they did. He knows everything. So he calls out to them, “Where are you?” (He knew where they were) and Adam says, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” God replies back, like the gentle parent that he is, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

And here it comes. I know I used it as a kid…my kids use it. The blame game! “But Mom, everyone else is doing it!” “Brother made me do it!” Only God’s children start blaming each other…. Adam says, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” Yeah, it’s her fault and it’s your fault, too, God since you put her here. Eve squirms and comes up with an excuse, too…. “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” Ah, free will. God gave us choices. There are good choices and bad choices. But of course, we can’t make a bad choice…we need to blame it on someone else….or something else. You know, I did it cause it was a full moon. Yeah, right. So God, being the good parent, must give out consequences to his children. There’s a consequence for the serpent, there’s a consequence for Eve (which is passed down to ALL of us women…yikes!) and Adam was punished as well. It was at this point that Eve got her name….being the mother of all humanity. And they were expelled from the Garden forever.

So, Eve’s legacy. She’s the one who gave me those awful labor pains!! Is she responsible for the horrible menstrual cramps I get, too? You know, for the longest time, I really did put that on her, but ya know what. I have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, just like everyone else has. I can’t blame her for the bad choices I made and that I still make today. If she didn’t make the first mistake, someone else would have. We may be made in God’s image, but we are not perfect like God is. And I thank Him daily for sending His Son, Jesus Christ, for saving me from my sins. I love listening to my daughter memorize her verses from Awanas. I see all these verses again with fresh new eyes as she learns them and the light bulb goes off in her head…..Romans 3:23 was her verse tonight…”for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” and it reminded me, that yeah, Eve’s legacy is always at the forefront of our minds, but someday, mine will be, too. There is nothing I can do to earn favor with God. No amount of goodness will allow me to enter heaven after my death because of all my poor choices. The one and only way is to be forgiven through the blood of Jesus Christ. Ephesians 2:4-9 tells us, “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.” The only way past our own sin is through Jesus Christ. Believe in him, and you will be saved.

When you think of Eve’s legacy or if you think of your own legacy, think of Christ’s legacy. It is our own, if we only believe. I want my legacy to be like Christ’s. Do you?

Faith of a Child, part 4

Luke 2: 1-7

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

This is such an incredible story.   There are so many facets of it that I am just amazed by.

First, the trip.  I looked on Google maps to see if I drove by car from Nazareth to Bethlehem, how far it is and how long it would take me by car to get there.   It said that it was 155 km (approximately 97 miles) which is about the same drive as from New York City to Philadelphia.   (The New York trip is just 5 miles further).   It would take me about 2 hours to drive it.   But at that time, of course, there were no cars, so the trip took….okay take a guess….   remember they are ON FOOT…..

A)  6 hours

B)  24 hours

C)  33 hours

D) 48 hours

Did you guess?  According to google maps (and yes, there is a function there to WALK from Nazareth to Bethlehem), it takes 33 hours to walk the trip.  (And of course google maps puts up this warning on the map… Use caution – This route may be missing sidewalks or pedestrian paths.)   That made me chuckle out loud!!  I would say there trip had more possible problems than that!

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.

Knowing that they needed to participate in this census, they got ready to go.  But can you imagine walking in Mary’s sandals?   She is 9 months pregnant, due any day, and she is about to go on a trip that will take 33 hours by foot.   I know when I started my last trimester with both my pregnancies, that the doctor told me to limit my travel and stay closer to home.   Not possible here.  Census takers didn’t come knocking on your door or the census survey wasn’t sent to your house…you had to go to the town of your birth.   I would have a 3 day trip by car to get to my home town of birth.  The same with my husband.   I am so glad that I don’ t have to follow in her footsteps.   Maybe she did get to ride on a donkey…but can you imagine all the potty breaks, how uncomfortable she must have been with a baby pressing up on her lungs and into her ribs.     Maybe having Braxton-Hicks contractions, maybe having real contractions, but still, they pressed on.

While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

It doesn’t say how long they were there.  Did he get his taxes paid on time?  Was he in the process of knocking on doors, trying to find a place to stay?  Didn’t Mary’s pregnancy cause ANYONE to give up their room?  Evidently not, because the passage said there was no room for them in the inn.    So Joseph and Mary stayed in a stable and Mary gave  birth right there where all the animals lived.   No sterile hospital,  no birthing center, not even able to give birth in her own home…Mary delivered her baby in a stable.   Girls, remember what it was like delivering your babies if you’ve had any?   It’s not a very clean process either.  But she wrapped up her newborn baby and laid him in a manger.

What is a manger?  It’s a feeding trough for animals.  Have you ever fed pigs or watched a farmer feed his pigs?   Slop goes in there.    So did our Savior.

One of my favorite songs of this season sums up this whole story… this is such a strange way to save the world.    But when have any of God’s ways truly made any sense?   If they did, they wouldn’t mean as much or be as memorable, would they?  I mean, if a baby was born to an unwed mother in the hospital, who would really talk about that?  It happens all the time now a days.   But a baby born in stable?  Placed in a manger?  His mother did not conceive him with his father?   That is something to remember.   These all came true.  It was prophized in the Old testament.   It came true.

I want to leave you at the end of this story with the video that I spoke of earlier.   The song on the video is so beautiful.  It really covers the spectrum of all the questions that Joseph and Mary probably had during the entire time span…from when the angel appeared to Mary to the time when her baby boy came into the world.   Why?   Because it is all part of God’s plan.  He loves us so much, it pains Him to be separated from us.   It pains Him that we don’t follow Him.  So He sent His Son to save the world.   All you have to do is believe in Him.  Believe that you are a sinner separated from God.  Believe that Jesus died on the cross for your sins.   God thought of you when He sent his Son, and the Son thought of you on the cross….won’t you trust and follow them now?   God has the perfect gift for you… one size fits all…all you have to do is take it.

Enjoy the video.  May all the blessings that God can send be heaped on you this Christmas season.    I know I feel blessed already.  Merry Christmas!

 

Faith of a Child, part 3

Matthew 1:18-25

18This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. 19Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

20But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[c] because he will save his people from their sins.”

22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23“The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”[d]—which means, “God with us.”

24When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

When we left the last bible study, Mary had just spent 3 months with Zechariah and Elizabeth and was now on her way home.   But now, I pick up the story from the eyes of the man who she was betrothed, Joseph.

Joseph was caught off guard by all this.  The young woman that he was betrothed be be married to was pregnant.  Now remember from the first installment, that betrothal meant that you were basically married.  It wasn’t an engagement period, it was the real deal.  What was he to do?  She was pregnant, so she couldn’t be a virgin….she was an adulteress!    But being the kind and righteous man that he was, he was going to quietly divorce her without making a spectacle of the whole thing.  He cared for her and didn’t want to make a public disgrace of her, so surely this whole thing could be done hush hush, right?  Until……

Here comes the angel of the Lord again.  In a dream, the angel reveals to Joseph God’s plan.  Mary was a virgin.  She was having God’s son, who would save the world.  His name will be Jesus.  Do not be afraid to take her as your wife.  The angel even quotes the prophet Isaiah.   Remember, Joseph was a righteous man, and he knew the laws and he knew of the prophets.  It was coming true.  Right in his own home.  God’s word was being fulfilled right in his own home!

So he took her into his home to be his wife.  He didn’t have any doubts.  He had great faith in the Lord through all of this as well.  And to be sure the prophecy was fulfilled, she remained a virgin until the birth of her son.

A lot of times, we take matters into our own hands.  Especially those of us (like me) who are type A personalities who believe that no one can do a better job than I can.  I thought for all the years that I was a refuser, that I could handle it.  I could figure out the way to make it right…to make it better.  I could solve this big problem that we had.  It wasn’t until I gave it up to God and His plan that was so much better that my marriage was saved.  I couldn’t do it without His help.  See, Joseph though he could fix the whole situation, too, but when God stepped in and said, “Trust me. I have a Plan”, he yielded to the One he had great faith in.  Dear one, we need to all yield to God.  Is there something that you just can’t let go of?  That you think you have the answer to, but it just isn’t working out the way you want it to?  Step aside and take a look at God’s plan.  In the end, it is so much better than anything you can plan.

Lord, thank you for your Master Plan for our lives.  Help us to see when we need to yield to Your will.  Help us to take the step of faith to let you take the reigns and take us on a wonderful ride of our lives.  Lord, thank you for sending your Son.  Your Plan would not be complete without Him.  Thank you, Lord for the free gift of salvation that you offer us.  Lord, I pray that if there is someone reading this who does not know your Son, that they would ask more about Him and learn to trust in Him.  Thank you, Lord, for saving a lowly sinner like me.  Amen.