Joseph didn’t just have one tense moment. Though we know little about him, what we do know is he dealt with a series of tense moments. First, a pregnant fiancé. God tells him to marry her anyway. He says yes. Second, God tells him to name the child Jesus. He says yes. A few years later, God tells him to move his family to Egypt. He says yes. Finally, God tells him to move the family back to Israel. He says yes.
Jesus’ arrival upends Joseph’s simple plan for life with Mary. Joseph never really knew what was going to happen next. Yet, though Joseph’s life plans may have moved from clear to unclear, Joseph simply obeys—even when obedience meant moving his family to another country. These changes caught Joseph off guard but they didn’t catch God off guard (Matthew 1.22-23).
There are times when things will seem unclear to us. Perhaps our child received a discouraging diagnosis or we struggle to find work in our field. While it’s unclear where our family may be in five years, we know to love them, pray for them and point them to God. We know that whether we’re working in our field or not, we need to work hard. Directionally things may be unclear, but relationally we know how to obey.
Today, copy and personalize the following prayer of trust and obedience: God, this (situation) is really unclear. I don’t know what is going on. I would really like some clarity. I trust you are able to handle this (situation). Even though things aren’t going as planned, I will obey you in the things I know to do. Thanks for loving me and caring about (situation).