Over these last few weeks, as Christmas is upon us, I began to wonder why God would use a couple of teenagers to take care of his beloved Son, a helpless baby who could not protect himself. Think about it: God, the Creator of the Universe, entrusted these two young people with the most important Gift to humankind. No interventions, no list of expectations, no army of angels to assist them. As far as we know, Mary and Joseph were left to care, love and raise baby Jesus in the simplest of homes and circumstances.
Certainly, God was with them. Certainly, Jesus was fully human and fully God. But just think about the trust that was placed on their shoulders. I wonder if there was any anxiety on their part to “do things right.” What mistakes did they make as all young parents do? How many sleepless nights did they experience, wondering how to protect, love and nurture their son?
Perhaps they rested in the knowledge that God was actually WITH them. God the Father was watching over them and God the Son was their tiny baby, and maybe—just maybe—they trusted in God enough to trust themselves. To put it another way, maybe they realized that since God trusted them with his Son, they ought to trust themselves more. They could then risk living and raising Jesus in the full knowledge that every step of the way, God was WITH them, even in the difficulties and the good times, the trials and the struggles.
It is my hope that each of you feels the full presence of God this Christmastime. May you know that you are fully and truly loved, and may that love give you the courage to risk life to the fullest!