Wednesday 18th December, 2019
Reference: Matthew 1:1-20
Matthew 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 as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.
There was a particular week in my old office when there were three consecutive fire alarms in the space of a week. Each alarm required complete evacuation of over five hundred personnel each time. We all knew the drill: in the event if a fire alarm, leave everything behind and calmly follow the fire marshals.
The reality, however, is that once the alarms went off and the shutters start to descend, near chaos ensued as panic and fear set in. Instructions became nearly futile as survival mode kicked in. Thus, in today’s text, the first thing the angel of God moved to do was to arrest the fear brewing in the heart of Joseph. In fact, Joseph could have been given instructions without any efforts to address his fear but God knew that it had to be properly dealt with before progress could be achieved.
Hence, on multiple occasions including messages to Jacob, Gideon, Zechariah Mary and Joseph, God’s opening statement was aimed straight at the seat of fear. Here is why: where fear prevails, no other voice seems loud enough to break through – peace, love, faith, listening and obedience are all relegated to the backstage. However, when fear is silenced, God’s voice breaks through and his instructions become as loud as an echo in the the darkness: clearly heard and understood.