“…and Jacob fathered Joseph the husband of Mary, who gave birth to Jesus who is called the Messiah.” Matthew 1:16
I remember it like it was yesterday, my first Christmas in my new family. I had been married for 2 ½ months. She was 3 years old. She was the cutest thing I had ever seen. Blond hair, blue eyes, held her daddy’s heart in the palm of her hand and we were going to have Christmas together! I would get to decorate a tree, hang stockings, and buy her presents…
Wait…she has a mom who will buy presents too! How do I know what to get her that she won’t get at both homes? Who will decorate their tree and home first with her? Who will buy her the better things? Will she compare the 2 Christmas events and will we “lose”? How do I win?
Winning…that was all that mattered for weeks. It was all about how I could win and be her favorite. To make a long story short, I lost. The precious little girl lost. My marriage lost. Everyone that I cared about lost. After that Christmas, I spent several holidays losing. In my mind, it was a competition for her heart by buying things. After about a year of the madness, I started looking at scripture. I started looking for “step parents” in the Bible. There had to be an example somewhere…and there I found it…in the Christmas story…Joseph. Jesus had a stepparent and his name was Joseph. I about ripped the pages to pieces scouring for words of wisdom from Joseph and I found NOTHING! Not one single word does scripture record coming from Joseph’s lips.
What was I to learn? What was God trying to show me?
So I started reading about Joseph and what he did. Here was my revelation: Joseph did exactly what God told him to do and nothing more. Matthew 13:55 tells us he was a carpenter, but every other time he is mentioned, Joseph was responding to what God had told him to do. God did not need Jesus to have another father. He needed someone to be obedient in order for His will to be accomplished. God did not need someone to speak with a lot of words or compete with Him in parenting. He needed someone that loved Him more than he loved himself. So what does that mean for me?
God did not need that little girl to have another mother…he gave her the one she needed. He only needed me to be obedient to His will for her life. God did not need me to compete with her mother. He needed me to love her father unconditionally. God did not need me to try to be “better". He needed me to be the best follower of Him that I could be.
Christmas changed, because I changed. Christmas became a day for our family to be together and worship a Savior that was born to save all of us from ourselves! It was no longer about a day…it was about a season.
“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to people He favors!” Luke 2:14 (HCSB)
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