Christmas Eve 2018

Merry Christmas! Pastor Chris shares with us on Christmas Eve about an unlikely character that was present on that first Christmas, Joseph. Joseph, the husband of Mary did not have his marriage to Mary start anywhere close to what he had dreamed or imagined.

From and elderly couple in Zachariah and Elizabeth being able to conceive for the very first time, to a virgin becoming pregnant, to shepherds being visited by a legion of angels, to a first time mom in having to give birth to her child in a barn surrounded by animals, to a group of magi traveling thousands of miles following nothing more than a star in the sky, to family drama, to mass murder under the wicked rule of King Herod, to a young family having to escape to another country for their lives, the story at Christmas is not all that the manger scenes shows it to be.

And in the midst of all of this, there is a man by the name of Joseph who sometimes takes a back seat to Mary and Jesus, but I think needs some recognition. While Mary and Joseph were far along in their “big day” planning, it took a turn that one one could have imagined. While they were planning for their wedding day and their married life together, Mary was visited by and Angel and by the power of the Holy Spirit came to be pregnant. Then she had to tell Jospeh and bring him into the loop.

I cannot even begin to image how this conversation played out or went. But it was not what he or Mary had planned for their life. So God knowing what is going through Joseph’s head, sends an angel to have a chat with him. The angels shows up in a dream and says, don’t worry Joe, take Mary as your wife. Keep moving forward with the plan that you had, she is not lying to you. She is telling the truth. She is going to give birth to a son and yes, this son is Jesus, the Savior, The Messiah.

Have you ever found yourself in a similar place? Looking at your life and thinking, this is not how I had planned this out. Jospeh knew this feeling all to well. But we have a choice, just like Jospeh had a choice. And this is not an easy choice. Jospeh chose to follow what the Angel told him and have the faith that God was up to something bigger than his original plan for life.

So what about you? Do you have faith that even when everything is falling apart around you that God still has a plan for your life? That there is still purpose for you even when life is not playing out like you planned or hoped or dreamed like it would.

What is your response? Will you have faith that God is still working in your life, right now, right here, at this moment tonight? Your original plan might not have included Jesus just like Jospeh, but God’s plan for your life does include Jesus. Jesus in a very big way! Something that brings joy, hope, peace, and love. Will you put your faith in God? Joseph did and it changed the world.

How Can We Be Praying For You?

You can always send us a prayer request or praise here or email Prayer@TheRiverChurch.net.


Sermon Audio