Window Shopping - Week 2
Last week we looked at the ways that God speaks to us through scripture and through prayer. This week we continue
It wasn’t that long ago that I came across an article that really shook me to my core it’s from Insider Magazine: Christmas is the most popular time of year for cheating (https://illicitencounterspress.wordpress.com/)
In this time of window shopping I believe we look at marriage with expectations and when they are not met we often feel let down. We sometimes see it not as it is but what the image the world wants us to see. When we look at the Christmas story we just look at what is to come with great anticipation, Jesus.
However the build up to the story is quite remarkable too and so today we are going to dive into the story of Joseph and Mary. Last week we saw when an angel came and told Mary that she was going to have a baby. In the back ground though, she is betrothed and in that culture it's a big deal.
With that, in mind lets dive into the story:
Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly.
---The Letter of the law said: “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.”
---In Marriage often our expectation is: Spouse isn’t going to make mistakes.
Joseph hears the story of the Holy Spirit thinks I don’t think so
---Reality: Your spouse is going to do things that upset you
---Response: Grace and mercy and understanding should be your first reaction when you feel wronged
Do not criticize: “Criticism is futile because it puts a man on the defensive, and usually makes him strive to justify himself. Criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a man’s precious pride, hurts his sense of importance, and arouses his resentment.” – Dale Carnegies.
Psalm 145:8-9 The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. The LORD is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made.
---If this is the example of our Lord than we should follow his example as disciples.
---In Marriage often our expectation is: My spouse should always listen to me
---Reality: We don’t always hear the story but the narrative that we have created
---Response: Listen and hear intently our spouses
Proverbs 12:15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
but a wise man listens to advice.
Steven Covey in his book the 7 Habits of Highly effective people talks about two habits that really need to be brought into the picture:
---Seek first to understand than to be understood
Matthew 1:20-23 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us).
---In Marriage often our expectation is: We will never be in a fight that will separate us
---Reality: Even the most noble of men and the most favored of women still struggled in their relationship
---Response: Seek God’s will in your marriage
Joseph considered those things, but what if he didn’t? Mary could be stoned, This story would be different and he would not be a part of the most important part of history. Mary is a single mom who has to raise a child in a society that does not honor adulteresses (See Judges 11:30-39).
Matthew 6:9-10 “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done"
Devote time with yourself and your spouse to seek God together
Matthew 1:24-25 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.
---In Marriage often our expectation is: God will make everything work out
---Reality: God has commanded us what to do but we don’t follow through
---Response: Be obedient to God’s will within your marriage
Through Jesus marriage is miraculous