Because 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” [Matthew 1:19 NIV]

Just about the time of preparation and celebration it happens – trouble with a capital ‘T”.  It happened to Joseph and it happens to us all.  What can we learn from Joseph?  When problems come and shatter your dreams and future happiness is buried, when hurt and disappointment hit you in the face, remember Immanuel – God is with you.

Joseph had options – he could have had Mary stoned to death.  He could have separated himself from this terrible reality.  He could have allowed society to deal harshly with her. Joseph couldn’t see beyond the obvious.  He must have been numbed by the loss of reputation, tormented by the unspoken jeers of friends and family and at a loss of knowing what to do.  But Joseph had an attitude of mercy!

Suddenly the problem became a place of potential miracle as Joseph’s attitude opened the door for God’s direction.   An attitude of mercy became the ability for Joseph to hear the Word of the Lord.  Joseph ‘joined’ himself to the problem and trusted God.  He believed that in the midst of the problem would be the birth of a miracle.

As you celebrate and prepare to enter the New Year remember when problems arise accept them with an attitude of mercy.  Look and listen for the voice of God and see the birthing place of a miracle.

Further reading:    Matthew 1; Psalm 61