Friday, December 28, 2012

So Joseph Got Up

Feast of The Holy Innocents, Martyrs.

So Joseph got up and, taking the child and his mother with him, left that night for Egypt, where he stayed until Herod was dead.

Joseph is told by the Lord in a dream to take Mary and Jesus from Bethlehem to Egypt, so escaping the murderous rage of Herod.  Jewish male babies are slaughtered by Herod in his fear to eliminate the rumoured child-king.  The first martyrs of the Church are the Holy Innocents of Israel.

So Joseph got up...  Not much is said directly in scripture about Joseph, but much can be read about him from his recorded actions.  As carefully as God chose Mary, Joseph was no random selection.  He was to be the provider, protector and cherisher of Mary and the baby Jesus.  To travel those distances over the rough terrain from Palestine to Egypt and back through hostile country would take the energy and strength of a man in his prime.

Not only physical strength was required of Joseph, but also spiritual strength.  Joseph heard God and immediately acted, on more than one occasion.  He recognised God's voice, had faith in Him and was obedient to Him. What a great role-model for any man who is a husband and father.

Father, you have made me a husband and father.  Help me press into You for strength and guidance in cherishing  protecting and providing for my wife and children.
Saint Joseph, please pray for me.

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