Joseph Went Up
Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David. Luke 2:4
Have you ever hiked up a mountain? What’s the longest hike you ever did? One mile? Five? Ten? Joseph hiked about ninety miles! Since Bethlehem was at a higher elevation than his hometown in Nazareth, Joseph, along with Mary, would have made an uphill journey to be registered in the census. This kind of trip would take at least a few days of walking on foot, maybe a little less if they had a donkey for Mary to ride.
Imagine you had to take a journey like Joseph's! That would be like traveling in the winter from Black Canyon City up to Flagstaff on foot or riding a donkey with your pregnant wife. Yikes, that’s tough!
Joseph was not a wimp. He was strong, and he believed God wanted him to go on this journey! Joseph was a carpenter (Mk 6:3) from Nazareth (Mt 2:11). As a carpenter, Joseph would have worked with metals, wood, and stone on a regular basis. You could imagine this was not an easy job. Carpenters often have calloused hands and a strong upper body from working with building materials. Joseph was not afraid to make tough decisions if it meant obeying God. He had already heard from an Angel of the Lord that this child was part of God’s plan to save the world! (Mt. 1:18-25)
Questions for reflection and discussion
1. Joseph had the courage to do what was right! Why is it important to do what right?
2. What courageous act of obedience do you need to take in your life right now?
Lord, help me to be courageous and do what's right! Thank You for the example of courage in the life of Joseph! Thank You for Your word and the Holy Spirit to guide me and strengthen me. In Jesus' name, amen.
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