This time of the year the Hallmark Channel and other channels present us with a multitude Christmas movies and shows. Stories include "miracles" of Christmas, Romantic stories, humorous (like home alone), Charlie Brown (a personal favorite), and some even include the manger story. Many of the Christmas shows are a reminder of the importance of family.
The birth of Jesus Christ into a family is a reminder to us ofthe importance of family. It also reveals much about the biblical model for the family.
The story of Mary and Joseph is still the most engaging Christmas drama. It begins as a romantic story of young engaged couple. The drama begins with angelic visits that bring confusion and complexity to their simple lives. The result is the character, ethics, and morals of Mary and Joseph are questioned throughout the community. All through the story we see the Spirit of God revealing the truth of Jesus as the messiah. His family becomes an example of how to build a godly family.
Joseph is an example of leadership in the home seeking to understand God's will and showing love at every step for Mary. Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame . . . (Matt. 1:19). At the risk of being ridiculed he obeys God at every step. The character and behavior of Joseph is a great example of a godly husband and father.
We see Mary as a submissive woman, And Mary said, "Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38). Her willingness to be a servant of the Lord for the accomplishment of God's purposes is an example of servant-hood. That same servant attitude was carried over showing respect for Joseph and as the mother our Savior.
Jesus humbled Himself being born as child, Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men (Philippians 2:5-7). He humbled himself entering into a family relationship. There was great amazement at His birth but there was also a great family celebration. His respect and love for family is clearly revealed in His life.
When our family gets together to celebrate Christmas it is always a time to remember the saving grace that came through the birth of Savior. At the risk of sounding repetitious and even boastful, Dianne and I often share that we "have no greater joy than to hear that my [our] children are walking in the truth (3 John 1:4)."
May your family celebration be a special time to remember Jesus was born into a family offering Himself up for our salvation. And, may we reflect the character of Joseph, Mary, and Jesus in our families.