‘Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream’ (vv19–20a) Matthew 1:18–25

Christmas is a season of wonder. The incarnation is surrounded with mystery as God breaks in. How completely we take the Gospel reports seriously may well depend on our appetite for the supernatural. But for me, this is pure history!

I am in awe of a teenager who accepts the invitation of an angel to carry the Son of God. Without hesitation, Mary was willing to face public disgrace and personal exclusion, if not death. Naivety or faith?

I think it is simply the courage and optimism of youth. Something our dour world could do with a strong dose of. Let’s encourage a rising generation to take their place in leading God’s purpose around the globe.

Then there’s Joseph. Apparently betrayed, for betrothal was akin to marriage in his society. Yet, he was not prepared to subject his fiancée to public shame; perhaps one reason God chose these two to usher in the new age of God’s kingdom.

In an age of reason, it’s easy to lose sight of the miraculous – but we do so at our peril. If we can no longer believe in a God who can suspend the laws of nature at will, then we worship a false god.

I would encourage us to read the miraculous narrative of that first Christmas, together with the prophecies that foretold it, and call out to God for miracles in our contemporary world. Not for our benefit – that’s selfishness – but for the needs of a distressed world, down the road or on the other side of the world.

SCRIPTURE TO CONSIDER: 2 Kings 4:38–43; Jer. 32:16–27; Mark 10:17–31; Acts 22:1–21.

AN ACTION TO TAKE: Do you struggle with the thought of a supernatural God? Read the Bible and count the miracles that declare the Mystery, our God.

A PRAYER TO MAKE: ‘Lord, awaken the faith that enabled Mary and Joseph to say yes to an angel and change the course of history for all. Amen.’

Photo taken from Pxhere.com

Micha Jazz is Director of Resources at Waverley Abbey, UK.