Summary: This message can be used during the Christmas season or a family series and illustrates how Christians deal with the curves that life give us in marriage and life.
Even Parents with the Perfect Child have problems!
Dr. Larry L. Thompson (2002)
Today as continue our sermon series entitled Crosspoints we will look specifically at the “Parents in the Pageant.” Our focus will be on Mary and Joseph and remember we are introduced to them early in the second act as we see them coming from Nazareth on their way to Bethlehem where Mary would give birth to the Savior, Jesus Christ. While this story is so well known we must not allow familiarity to breed a mistaken contempt. What I want you to see today is that EVEN Mary and Joseph had bumps in the road they had to deal with. Even the only couple to actually have a perfect child had the curves thrown at them just as couples do today.
As you hear the Word of God today please ask the Lord to impress upon your heart the names of individuals or families that are facing some bumps in the road of life and begin to ask the Lord how He can use this scripture and this portion of the pageant to meet their needs and bring them to the CROSSPOINT of understanding who Jesus Christ really is and what He can do for their life.
Life is a journey, an adventure. Every journey on the road of life can expect encounter some unexpected curves, the dip, or bump or chug hole that seems to knock your life out of balance and causes you to lose direction and focus. It could be anything:
• The medical report you never expected
• The accident you didn’t see coming
• The job that is terminated
• The loss of a longtime friendship
• A rebellious child
• An adulterous spouse
• Unexpected pregnancy
• Losing a baby
• The death of someone you love without warning
• Being transferred to a new location
And this list goes on and on…You begin to see the focus of this message. We all have the unexpected curves that come into our lives. The manner in which we deal with those times determines spiritual victory or defeat.
Mary and Joseph knew about life’s curves. In fact, the Christmas story is a story filled with unexpected events that could never be anticipated.
Let’s examine this journey in the life of Mary and Joseph as we explore how to deal with the unexpected curves on the road of life.
“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.  (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)  And everyone went to his own town to register.  So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.  He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.  While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,  and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”
BIBLICAL BACKGROUND OF THE PRINCIPLE CHARACTERS INVOLVED:
Mary…Who she is?
• Cousin to Elizabeth
• Perhaps of the tribe of Levi, perhaps a descendant of David since her mother was from Bethlehem
• Parents were Joachim of Nazareth and Anna of Bethlehem.
• Sister was Salome, wife of Zebedee, mother of James and John.
What was her Character…
• Sexually Pure and Moral
• Woman of Faith
• Found favor with God
• Willing Servant
• Attitude of Praise
What was her Assignment…
• Give birth to and be the mother of God’s Son.
Joseph…Who is he?
• Tradition says that Joseph was a widower, an older man.
• Taxpayer - Luke 2:1-5
• Common Man
• Carpenter – probably good with details. Measure twice before you cut once.
What was his Character…
• Sexually Pure (Matt. 1:18) “This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit.”
• Man of Integrity (Matt. 1:19) – Look at his reaction when he discovered Mary was pregnant.
• Man of Faith
• Sensitive (Matt. 1:19) “Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.” – not a cruel, cold hearted individual
• Level-headed (Matt. 1:20) “But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.”– thought about and reflected on situations rather than simply reacting.