A Bit Part Player?

Do you ever feel invisible, a bit part player in life? People around you have sparkling personalities that make others love them, but you are just there.  Others have amazing stories but your life is ordinary, not terrible, but it feels like you could disappear unnoticed. The world needs people who are faithful, steady, who show up to do what they do every day.  We meet a person like that in the Christmas story. His name? Joseph!

We know next to nothing about him. None of his words are recorded in the Holy Scripture. Matthew tells us he was a ‘righteous man.’ Luke tells us that he took his family regularly to Jerusalem for the holy festivals, a sign of true devotion to the Lord. He was responsive to the Holy Spirit’s revelation that his fiancé was pregnant by God’s will and he made the hard choice to go ahead and marry her in spite of the whispers he knew would follow him around the small town where everybody knew everything. And, he named the baby as God directed, calling Him, Jesus.  (Yeshua, which means, God saves)

The fact is that without Joseph the story of Jesus’ birth would be much different. A single mother was a disgrace. An outcast, judged for her ‘sin,’ she would have been poverty stricken, consigned to a miserable life, but for Joseph! His role may seem minor, but he is an indispensable part of God’s plans and purposes for the revelation of Himself in the Person of Jesus, the Savior.  The enduring part of Joseph’s story is his faithfulness and obedience, without recognition, without thanks, in a rather obscure role.

As we move to the celebration of the Savior’s birth and the salvation of the Lord that He brought to the world, let’s pray to be like that man in the shadows, who did his part in the plan of God. When all has been said and done it is God who rewards and in His plan, there are no bit parts. Each of us is gifted to serve and to become an indispensable part of His will.  Paul was inspired to teach that “God’s various gifts are handed out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit. God’s various ministries are carried out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit. God’s various expressions of power are in action everywhere; but God himself is behind it all.

Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit, and to all kinds of people!” (1 Corinthians 12, The Message)  What matters most? Faithfulness!

So, as you worship this Christmas, as you look at the creche, and remember the story, take note of that guy in the background and pray, “Father, help me to be faithful to Your plan, right where I am, just as I am.”  In that obedience, we find deep contentment, fulfillment, and ultimately the best words ever –  the Father’s commendation – “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enjoy your Father’s house forever.”

The word from the Word to take with you today is from Matthew’s Gospel. “Now this is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. But while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Joseph, her fiancé, being a just man, decided to break the engagement quietly, so as not to disgrace her publicly. As he considered this, he fell asleep, and an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to go ahead with your marriage to Mary. For the child within her has been conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”

All of this happened to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet: “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and he will be called Immanuel (meaning, God is with us).”

When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord commanded. He brought Mary home to be his wife, but she remained a virgin until her son was born. And Joseph named him Jesus.” (Matthew 1:18-25, NLT)  Lord, help me to like Joseph. Amen.

(Video of this blog at this link)


O Come All Ye Faithful

O come all ye faithful
Joyful and triumphant
O come ye O come ye to Bethlehem
Come and behold Him
Born the King of angels

O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
Christ the Lord

Sing choirs of angels
Sing in exultation
O sing all ye bright
Hosts of heav’n above
Glory to God all
Glory in the highest

Yea Lord we greet Thee
Born this happy morning
Jesus to Thee be all glory giv’n
Word of the Father
Now in flesh appearing

C. Frederick Oakeley | John Francis Wade

© Words: Public Domain

One response to “A Bit Part Player?”

  1. Thank you. Merry and blessed Christmas


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