Monday, December 19, 2011

Mary and Joseph--a closer view

Keeping last Friday's lovely post by Snoodles in mind, I'd like to spend this week studying the Nativity a little closer. I hope that you'll set aside time with me to open your heart and really learning about the Gift of the Season.

Have you ever taken the time to really think about Mary?
Here is a little background for you. The city of Nazareth was on a trade route. It was not uncommon for teenage girls to sell their services to traveling merchants or Roman soldiers. Prostitution was rampant. Mary was a young teen; possibly even as young as 12, and probably not older than 15. 

While she was not perfect, Mary was a God fearing young woman.
 Please take a moment to read Luke 1: 26-56. 

Didn't you find that passage beautiful? I just love that Jesus and John knew each other from the womb! 
Most amazing to me though, here is this young girl, and the first thing she does is run to her older Aunt to praise God! 

Now let's take a look at Joseph.

We don't know Joseph's age; but we can assume that he was at least several years older than Mary.
We do know that he must have been a very considerate, loving man. 
I'll let you read the passage about Joseph, and then we will discuss that in a bit more detail.
Please read Matthew 1: 18-25.

There are a couple of important things to note. Mary was betrothed to Joseph. Betrothal was a serious matter to the Jews and could not easily be broken. But, Joseph was a righteous man.(vs19). This is where we know Joseph was considerate and loving because he could have surely been disgraced by Mary's condition, but instead he selflessly thought of her first.
"He planned to marry her, but was prepared to abort his plans so she could keep her baby. How different than modern couples who abort their baby in order to keep their plans."(by I. Campbell)

 Friday Snoodles played one of my favorite songs. I am going to share two more here. Take a moment to play them, as music is very powerful. Let this set the mood for this upcoming busy week. The first is written through Mary's eyes and the video images are very powerful and moving. It just sent chills down my spine watching it.
The second is written through Joseph's eyes~so appropriate to end today's study.


Belinda said...

Very moving songs and video. Breath of Heaven is just about my favorite Christmas song.

I thought about this, and wrote in my journal:

The perspective of Mary- "May it be done as You will Father." How someone that young, could willingly agree to something that will tarnish her reputation beyond repair, will be a burden to her, is amazing to me. That she didn't question why, was only curious as to how. And she immediately ran to see her cousin who also was experiencing a miracle. God never makes mistakes, and he chose well.

The perspective of Joseph-
"I will serve You Oh God." He put self aside, and did the will of God. Even though it was hard to accept, he did. And he protected not only the chosen Mary, but God's Son.

I'm touched anew. May I remember each day, the gift of Christmas and the sacrifice all three of these made for me.

Hillbilly Tonya said...

It is amazing when you think about the age of these young people. I think about my daughter at 14 and she needed a good swat is what she needed. And for Joseph to take all that criticism; because you know he did. He could have just had her stoned!

Just leaves me feeling ashamed at myself because I could not have been chosen for sure.