As we prepare for Christmas in the Harm household - wrapping gifts and cleaning the house for our company - I took a little break and read the morning newspaper. One story was about the new movies about the birth of Christ and how these movies are now showing more then just Mary and Jesus. They are starting to center on Joseph.
From the beginning of Christianity, Joseph has stayed in the background. And from some “old” writings really did have much impact on the life of Christ. But look at the whole picture. Joseph married Mary, knowing she was pregnant and promised to love the child as his own. Joseph protected the honor of his wife and did everything in his power to protect her child.
And while we don’t know much about the relationship between Joseph and Jesus, I’d like to believe that Joseph helped to shape and mold a young Christ, to grow into a respectful man.
The reality is that what I am describing is the role of a step-father. A person who takes on obligations that others may walk away from. A person who loves his wife and understands that her child is an important part of her life. And ultimately what Joseph knew was that while he could have a close relationship with Jesus - he would always be “only a step-dad.” Like all step-fathers realize, that while they love their step-child and that child may love them - there will always be another father in that child’s life.
As a step-parent I have a different appreciation for Joseph and the whole story of his life with Mary and the birth of their child - Jesus. If you noticed I said “the birth of their child.” A step-parent will tell you that while they weren’t present for the conception of that child they are very much that child’s parent and they love that child as their own.
The story of the birth of Jesus - is a story of love - and blended families…
This entry was originally posted on Saturday, December 23rd, 2006