Have you ever had a perfect plan that was interrupted by powers outside your control?
Maybe a cruise canceled by a hurricane?
A wedding delayed due to rain?
As you can imagine as a pastor I have heard many of these stories. If your plans do not go the way you want them….you are not alone.
Maybe the most frustrating part of a plan interrupted is the loss of control experienced in the process which leads to confusion and sometimes chaos.
In the scripture, we read this week see a young couple promised to be married. Young love is simply the sweetest! The perfect plan and promise of marriage and then kids was seriously interrupted when Joseph finds out Mary was pregnant. He immediately made plans for divorce.
UNTIL an angel came and confirmed for him that Mary’s story was true. The angel instructs him that when the baby is born he will call him Jesus. So…..scripture said Joseph “considered” the angels’ word and went along with the plan.
The scripture ends with the following sentences, “When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.”
So although Joseph went along with the plan he did not consummate the marriage until Mary gave birth. He was still holding out for something….possibly there was still doubt in his mind?
Finally, we see he calls the baby, Jesus, which he was instructed. This indicates a sort of obedience and acceptance on Joseph’s part.
Joseph’s story is not very different from many of our own. We too find that at times plans change and are out of our control. Although we know there could be a promise in the plan- it does not feel right as we walk through it. In Joseph’s story, sweet carols did not fill his mind but confusion.
Today, maybe you too are feeling confused about a few plans interrupted.
Maybe you are wondering how long your pain will continue? How long someone you love will be sick? If the cancer treatment will really work? If you will survive yet another Christmas with family?
Know that Joseph too felt this way. Yet, Joseph didn’t stay this way.
By the end of our scripture, Joseph showed signs of acceptance and obedience to God when he named his baby, Jesus.
Although you might be in a time of confusion remember that you will not be there forever. Little by little your trust in God will grow and your promise and “plan re-created” will be revealed.
Confusion does not have the end of our story in scripture, rather the cradle of Christ is the promise that and plan that conquered the world with love! Confusion will not be the end of your story as well so in the meantime hold onto Christ and your faith and wait patiently for all will be revealed.
See you on Sunday!