Joseph was a hardworking tradesman who God hand-picked from all the men in the world to be the earthly father of His own Son, Jesus Christ. What an honor! And in some ways, what an incredibly challenging task.
Joseph wasn’t a king, a politician, or a recognized leader of any kind when he was betrothed to a young woman named Mary. A simple carpenter, he was also a man of compassion. When he learned Mary was pregnant and knew the child could not be his, he intended to divorce her quietly and send her back to her family — but God had other plans.
Matthew 1:20-21 says, “An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’”
Joseph worked diligently to protect his wife Mary and their baby, then saw to Jesus' education and needs as he was growing up. In a time when blended families were not the norm, Joseph embraced Jesus, providing for him, loving him, and teaching him the valuable skills of the carpentry trade. There was no parenting guidebook for raising God’s Son — so together, Joseph and Mary leaned into prayer, and did everything they could to raise Jesus well, and with love.
The Bible calls Joseph a righteous man, and Jesus must have loved his guardian for his quiet strength, honesty, and kindness. How God’s heart must have broken to send His Son into a fallen world, and how carefully he must have chosen the man who would raise him here on earth.
John 14:6 says, “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’”
Just as Joseph was loyal to His Son, we have an opportunity to be loyal to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, too.
Joseph’s obedience in the face of unexpected circumstances are an example of what it means to truly trust and follow God — even when the path takes a turn.
From Joseph, Jesus’ father here on earth, we learn that...
God honors men of integrity, and rewards them with his trust.
Mercy always wins.
We may face humiliation in this life when we seek to obey God, but we can gain a close relationship with Him.
Heavenly Father, every family’s story is unique. Thank you for the blessing of families as unique as a fingerprint, and for calling strong men to the task of providing for and leading them. Amen.