“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8, 9
“But as he (Joseph) considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She shall bear a son and you shall call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins.'” – Matthew 1:20, 21
#3 – God’s ways are not our ways
I have some pretty good ideas…how about you? There are times when I am reading the Scripture and I think, “Really God? I can think of some easier ways to do that.” There have been times in my own life that I wonder what God was thinking. Something happens and I wonder why or something doesn’t happen and I wonder why. I feel that I need to pull God aside and give Him a little friendly advice…can you imagine that? After all, no one knows me better than me and no one knows what I need better than I do…right?
However, after time passes, most of those precarious events in my life look a lot different. As I look back, I can see God’s hand in the timing or the events and I am humbled by His wisdom and grateful for His direction. Yes, our God knows us better than we know ourselves and His ways are the best for us and part of a bigger plan. But, they are not always our ways. They may not seem to make sense at the time, but…our prayer needs to always be, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”.
So, when it comes to the details of the Christmas story we can understand why Joseph and Mary both required angelic visitations to confirm such a ridiculous unconventional plan to bring the Messiah into the world. A scandalous birth in a small town on the backside of Galilee would probably not be our plan. We may have picked a more prominent family with clearer connections to the royal line…born in the palace…politically positioned…but, God’s ways are not our ways and His thoughts are far above ours.
No, no one would have planned out the Christmas story the way it happened. It was filled with shattered expectations, broken dreams, and many disappointments. However, looking back we can see His hand in every detail. We can see God working through all the circumstances…good and bad. Everything for a reason. Everything for His glory. Everything for a purpose.
Mary and Joseph were wise enough to realize that God’s ways were not their ways and they chose to follow. Christmas reveals a God whose ways are not only different from our ways but greater as well.