December 23- Matthew 1:18-25
v.20 "But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit."
When carrying a younger Ezra downstairs after nap-time I liked to ask him the same questions: "Did you have any baby dreams? Were you a hero? Were you flying? Were there zombies?" He usually laughed at the final question, not because he knew what a zombie was, but because the tone of my voice added some intrigue.
Joseph's hopes had been dashed. His marriage seemed to be over before it had started. Mary was pregnant! Only God could redeem this story.
The angel spoke in his dream, calling Joseph the son of the great hero of Israel, King David. The angel comforted his fear, not of zombies, but of the living-death of his lost future. The angel delivered the astounding news that the Holy Spirit took flight from the heights of heaven to create life in the womb of a young woman. This child of Mary's would somehow be the arrival of God-with-us, Immanuel. "I am here, where you are."
But I do know the promise given in Holy Scripture: In triumph and defeat, God is with us. We are called to witness to this hope, which could make us a spectacle in the eyes of many. So be it, for we live by faith in the Dream of God for this world.
God of the Future, you have great dreams for your people; plans to bring blessing and not harm. May this hope take flight in our hearts, that we might witness to the spectacular love of your Son, our Hero, Jesus Christ. Amen.