Sunday, December 20, 2015
MARY'S FIRST CHILD
Mary’s delivery of her first child was anything but idyllic. The sentimentality which centuries of Christian imagination have given us surely covers the reality of the silent night and the day which followed.
It’s usually assumed that Joseph helped her deliver the child, but that would not have been the case. Strict Jewish rules prohibited men from assisting women in childbirth. Galilean woman, even those who were young, prided themselves in self-birth, so the young wife Mary would do the best she could, while Joseph would do only as much as he was allowed to ease her pain that night.
The day following would not have been restful, despite their location. Joseph needed to find food and would have sought a better place for them in the days to come. People other than the visiting shepherds would have come and gone, feeding animals or taking them out and bringing them in as needed.
Mary’s Christmas was certainly a time of wonder. It is for every mother who sees and cares for her firstborn. Many questions would have come, and she may have asked Joseph to bring another woman to the stable for help and advice. She also may have wondered how she was adequately going to mother the new infant the angel had called Immanuel, “God With Us.” Mary must have asked herself many times, “Who is this child and what will His future be?”
Today, two thousand years later, each of us needs to ponder similar questions, “Who is He and what will my future be with Him?” The importance of His birth, His life, His suffering and death, His resurrection, and His promise to return is of greatest importance to us all.
Take time today to ask God to help you know and appreciate what He has done for you in providing you a personal relationship with His only Son. Give thanks Mary and Joseph have given you a glimpse into the face of God.
“Mary pondered all these things in her heart.” (Luke 2:19)