If you think about it, there is no story that is more joyful than that of the first Christmas. What makes it even more special is the journey Mary and Joseph went through before the birth of Jesus Christ. Here are four lessons we can learn from this holy couple:
God’s plan is much, much bigger than yours.
It’s no secret that Mary’s pregnancy caused a dramatic upheaval in the lives of the couple. Since she was betrothed to Joseph, it was expected that they had plans to start a family and live together as one—but all their plans were all dashed when they were chosen by God himself. Joseph was deep in anguish when he discovered Mary was pregnant with a child that wasn’t his own, but he obediently complied when God assured him that it was His divine plan. We can’t begin to imagine how overwhelmed Mary and Joseph must have been, but instead of complaining, they wholeheartedly embrace God’s will, trusting that His plans were better than anything they could have dreamed up on their own.
A door will always open to let us in if we knock.
The Bible says that when Joseph and the heavily pregnant Mary arrived in Bethlehem, all the inns were full and no one would take them in. Instead of giving up, they knocked on every door until an inn-keeper finally allowed them to stay in his stable. The couple kept on going despite their hardships, believing that someone would finally let them in if they just had the courage and perseverance to keep knocking.
Home is where the heart is.
We all know the story of how Jesus was laid in a manger after his birth, surrounded by livestock. Not a very scenic birthing place, right? But Joseph and Mary made the most of what they had—and even received the first visitors of Baby Jesus there. This serves as a heartwarming reminder for all families. Instead of stressing over all the external Christmas preparations, maybe we can think like Mary and Joseph, and build a warm and happy home, however humble, as long as we are among our loved ones.
The journey may be difficult, but it will be worth it in the end.
Traveling to an unknown place is never easy. Even more so if you’re traveling on a donkey while on the family way. That was the ordeal that Mary and Joseph had to go through before Jesus Christ was born. The fact that Mary was due to give birth any moment must have added to the stress of the couple. However, they pressed on, determined to reach their destination. The Bible said that Mary gave birth to Jesus after that long journey, making it all worth it in the end.
In our own lives, there will be times when we will face hardships and feel like giving up. But just like Mary and Joseph, we can soldier on. And when we finally reach our destination, we will realize that all the obstacles we had to overcome only served to make our victory sweeter. When times are tough, we just need to keep on going until we reach the light at the end of the tunnel. And who knows? We may even discover our very own miracle when we get there.