18.12.2020 Matthew 1:18-24

In today’s gospel passage we read Matthew`s narration of the birth of Jesus. It seems appropriate to meditate on Jesus’ foster father, Joseph, before Christmas. “When Joseph woke up he did what the angel of the Lord had told him to do: he took his wife to his home.” (Matthew 1:24). Joseph knew the will of God through his dreams. He was a person who placed the will of God above his own. It would have been a wise decision to abandon Mary who was pregnant without his knowledge. But he could hear what God was saying to him. Joseph was a man of deep trust. Or else how can he sleep when he knows the girl he is going to marry is pregnant! He is dreaming in this sleep with his head in the lap of God. Just look at him, he completed his mission and returns without waiting for a word of thanks.

He is known as the hidden saint. His life was behind the curtain, with Mary and Jesus in front of him. In his latest apostolic letter “With a Father’s Heart” Pope Francis describes st. Joseph as “the man who goes unnoticed, a daily, discreet and hidden presence,” and, yet, played “an incomparable role in the history of salvation.” He walked in the shadow of Mary and Jesus. There is nothing more about him in the Gospels. The greatest blessing the gospel can give to a person belongs to Joseph, “he was righteous.” He knew God’s will and was able to do what was right because he listened to God’s voice. oseph shows us that if we keep on seeking after what God is asking of us, God will somehow reveal his will to us. In our efforts to discern God’s will, God’s desire, for our lives, Saint Joseph can be a good companion, someone we can turn to in prayer, for help with our discerning. May this father, who held the hand of Jesus, intercede for us as well.