Words from the Heart for Wednesday December 20th, 2017

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly.

Matthew 1:18 (NRSV)

A Righteous Man

Joseph is the righteous man engaged to Mary. At first he does not know what to do with the puzzling news he receives. He wants to do the right thing but there is no way to understand this sudden turn of events.

Listen to Words from the Heart

 

If you have a feeling that parents had it easier in the past than they do in 2017, you may be right, at least according to some new data from Statistics Canada. 2017. The government agency released a Time Use Survey earlier this year, and it paints a picture of a country where fathers are doing more than ever before around the house, but moms are still doing as much as they ever have – which is a lot, and more than dad.

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The heart of the Christian faith is the balance between righteousness and compassion. This is the tension that we live with as followers of Jesus. The Bible very clearly instructs us that we are live a life that honours the Lord and demonstrates his transformational power in our lives. At the same time, we are to show the love and compassion of Christ to a hurting world that is caught up in the sin we are to avoid. How is this possible? There is a beautiful example of someone who was walking in this balance, this tension, and that was Joseph, who was engaged to Mary the mother of Jesus. Matthew 1:18 tells us, “Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly.” Joseph was a man who lived righteously. He knew what God’s standards are and was committed to living by them, but in a way that showed compassion to Mary.

These have been words from the heart.
Bob Beasley