Many of you have been coming back daily to participate in this Chase family celebration of Advent. I am glad. For those of you who are new, we have been looking at the powerful emotions that Mary experienced during the nine months of her pregnancy as she anticipated the birth of Jesus.
A pregnancy is supposed to be a time of happiness, but for many of the women I work with who are facing unplanned pregnancies, the joys are hard to find. They wonder if their sexual partner will go AWOL and abandon his responsibilities as the birthfather of the child. My clients often try to hide the pregnancy from their other children or from Mom and Dad. As a result, my clients are lonely people. They have no one to comfort them when they fight the effects of morning sickness. They have no one at their side who is excited by feeling the first kick of the baby within the womb. They arrive at the hospital with no one nearby to ease the pain of labor and delivery. Tears fall.
Mary understood those emotions. She herself experienced…sadness.
When she first told Joseph about the pregnancy, his plan was to quietly set aside the wedding plans. He would step out of the picture. Divorce papers would be drawn up. Bridal gifts would have to be returned. The wedding banquet would be canceled.
Without doubt, Mary would have been sad. Even the excitement of seeing an angel could not take away the sadness of losing Joseph. The prospect of being a single parent and facing the whispers of village gossips must have produced tears.
Not everyone is happy during the Christmas season. Look around you today and ask God to show you the colleague who is lonely or one neighbor who needs encouragement. Pass along a hug and remind them of 2 Cor. 1:3 which says, “All praise to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the source of every mercy and the God who comforts us.” Perhaps you are the one who is sad today. If so, read Psalm 119:76 which says, “Now [Lord] let your unfailing love comfort me, just as you promised me, your servant.”