Day two of our POWERful Bible journaling through the book of Matthew. Yesterday I shared that idea that the theme of Matthew is the Kingdom of heaven. It continues in chapter two, only we see this Kingdom as a part of the very ordinary and daily life here on Earth. The King of this Kingdom is born in a tiny town, to nondescript parents. And although his parents welcomed Wise men bearing great gifts and his foster father received angelic visions…our baby King travels at night to avoid being killed, lives in exile to avoid being killed, and returns, not to the place of His birth, but a town that was “…ignoble and obscure, and despised by the Jews.” (The Great Commentary of Cornelius a Lapide )
You know one of the things I admire in Mary and Joseph? Their ready willingness. Once God’s will is revealed to them, they do it. Period. And in typing this out right now I think I may know one their secrets for the ready willingness, they were always listening for and to God. They knew Who He was so they knew Who and what they were listening for. They knew Who He was, so when He led them, they trusted Him. I want that ready willingness that comes from knowing and trusting.
And one more thing, Joseph, Mary and Jesus were, by all appearances, your ordinary run of the mill family. So much so that we are told in John 6 the Jews grumbled, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, ‘I came down from heaven’?”
POWERful Bible Journaling: Matthew 2
P –Thank you Lord. There are some days I can see Your care and concern in the little details of my ordinary life. Until I forget. Please help me to be one that doesn’t forget.
O –(God) God sometimes informs on a “need to know” basis. Actually I think most of the time He does this, or it seems like it to me. He led the Wise men day by day, night by night with a star in the sky. He led Joseph in a series of dreams…as needed.
(Me) Reading this chapter, I wondered, “Am I a Herod?” Some of the words used to describe him: disturbed, troubled, anxious, furiously enraged (when things don’t go his way). He behaves opposite of the Wise men and the parents of Jesus who react with a peacefulness, even when they don’t fully know or understand what is going on.
W —vs 13…When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.” vs 14…So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt,
E –Instead of behaving like a Herod, anxious and wondering about the future, I need to behave as the holy parent of Jesus and stay until God tells me what’s next. Anytime today I catch myself worrying about the future, I will stay. I hate to compare myself to a dog, but when I tell my dog to “stay” she sits still, or at least kind of still, and keeps her eyes on me, waiting for my next command…if she obeys. So I will mentally or even verbally tell myself “stay” and I will turn my eyes to God either interiorly or physically by looking at a lovely picture or holy card of Jesus.
R –Today Lord I will “stay.” I will be still and know that You are my God.
Please share your POWERful reflections in the comments.
P – Help me to hear your word and know your will. Amen.
O – God warned St. Joseph through an angel to save them and Jesus from harm. This tells me that God does speak to us, and we must listen and obey as St. Joseph so promptly did throughout his life.
W – “the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Rise, take the child and his mother and flee to Egypt…’ and he rose and took the child and his mother by night…” Matthew 2:13-14
Again, Joseph didn’t wait until the morning to drink some coffee first before obeying. He took his family and left at night, right then.
E – I shouldn’t wait around for the “right time” or when I “feel like it” or when I’m not sick or not in pain or the sky is just the right shade of blue. I need to obey God NOW.
R – Lord, help me to hear and understand you and immediately obey as St. Joseph shows us. Amen.
First time obedience is so difficult. There are so many reasons I don’t obey immediately especially linked to how I “feel.” His patience with me is humbling.
P. God let me stay focused on your steadfast love and let me live my faith freely no mater of where or with whom I live.
O. I need to stay constantly focused on His Star and follow it quietly cause it will lead me to His steadfast love and peace… and I will be blessed!
W. “Where is he who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
E. I must admit that sometime I have been distracted way too often and have lost sight of His star… sometime I have been worried or too busy with the mundane to hear His Voice and see His light…. even if He is the only one that calm me down… giving me a reason to get up in the morning and to worship Him.
R. God stay with me…. do not let me down by fear of this secular world… let me stand up for You and my faith no matter what the Government or the common people say or think!
This world is a distracting place isn’t? God alone matters!
P: Lord, please open my ears so I can hear you. Please give me the ability to love people the way you love them, and see people the way you see them. Please open my mind and my heart to you and your word.
O: 2 things came to mind after I read this chapter. Obedience and Joy. The magi listened to God. They were told to follow the star and there they would find Jesus. They listened and when they found Jesus they were overjoyed and showered him with gifts. God is so sweet anfbloving. I need to be obedient and more joyous instead of complaininh about silly things.
W: Matthew 2:10-11
“They were overjoyed at seeing the star and on entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother”
E: Be obedient and joyous!!!
W: Lord, help me to be joyous! Lord, help me to be obedient!
Oh my gracious JOY! Yes. Sometimes it seems elusive in the mundane. Thanks for the reminder.
I love your view on this chapter!
Thank you Cheryl. The Holy Ghost is amazing at helping us understand the ways of God, breaking it down into terms we can understand.
I loved the analogy of your dog sitting still (when obeying) with her eyes on it’s master, just as we should sit still and obey with our eyes on the Lord.
Isn’t it sweet the way our Lord brings things to our mind to help us understand His ways?