Mary wasn’t the only one who may have struggled to find confidence in the middle of the Christmas story.
Based on the angel’s instructions to Joseph, fear must have been fighting for a place in his heart and mind as well.
But after he had considered this, 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. Matthew 1:20 (NIV)
Maybe these are the same words Jesus is speaking to us – instructions He is delivering to you and I –
Do not be afraid … because what is conceived in you is from the Holy Spirit.
I used to think that if there was something God had for me to do, I wouldn’t be afraid. In fact, because of the Holy Spirit residing in me, I would feel brave. I’ve discovered that simply isn’t true. Just like it is not true that God will not give us more than we can handle. His word never says that; not anywhere. What He does say is I will not give you more than I can handle. He allows these things in our lives so that we will find the faith, dependence and confidence we need in Him alone.
As we head into this new year, I believe the Holy Spirit has conceived new life in you. It is from Him …yet you feel afraid.
In fact, just looking at the one God chose to be Jesus’ earthly father makes me think it must be normal.
Normal is not what God has for us, though. What He has for each one of us isn’t a whole lot different from what He had for Joseph – to be one part of His plan to bring the Savior to the world. We are part of God’s plan to bring His salvation to those around us who have yet to know Him.
We can see by looking at Joseph’s next steps, Joseph didn’t allow fear to fuel his heart. Instead, faith did.
It’s ok. Admit your fear to take your step in doing your part. Then listen to His words to you,
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. ” Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)
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