I am not sure how we Moms and Dads would handle those conditions today. As for Joseph, he is engaged to a young girl, and then finds out she is having a baby. It isn't his....it is God's son. Wow! Talk about a shocker. Then he has to take responsibility to go to Bethlehem to pay taxes with a wife who is ready to have her baby any day. Talk about stress.
Mary of course is the one I always wonder about. It is believed she may have been as young as 13 or 14. She has a new husband and a miraculous baby on the way. Then she has to travel by foot and donkey about 70 miles to pay taxes. She will be in a strange place, with no Mother close by, and no one to help her if her baby came while they were on this trip. On top of that, there is no nice room for them to stay in. Now she finds herself bedded down in a stable filled with straw and animals.
The Bible does not tell us how long labor was, but she is having Him in less than ideal circumstances. Once Jesus was born, she was immediately and totally in love with her son! The Bible tells us she swaddled Him. That is the ultimate care of a mother, to wrap her child tightly in cloth to mimic the safety and comfort of the womb. It doesn't say, but I can imagine she is like any mother, she made sure He was perfect, with ten toes, and ten fingers.
I can picture her quietly talking to Him, cuddling Him close, and praying over Him. The weight of responsibility on her and Joseph for this little one was huge! They also knew God would lead them, help them, and protect them.
Then as she was settling in to rest, more amazing things began to happen. A bright star settles over the stable. Angels are singing and declaring the birth. Strangers who were shepherding their sheep start making their way to see this miracle of God's son. It all had to be overwhelming, and yet we know, God was totally in charge! Mary kept these memories in her heart.
I believe that Mary and Joseph were no different than any new parent. The Bible doesn't tell us if Jesus cried, or got sick, or got a fever. If He did, I know His parents would have prayed for Him, and watched over Him. They were led to a place where they had to totally rely on God. Joseph was told in a dream his new son was in danger of being sought out and killed. Yet He and Mary were totally obedient to God, and fully relyed on Him. When God said go to Egypt, they went, taking them even further from home, and for a longer time.
We Moms and Dads today face many dangers for our children and grandchildren. Is our first line of defense prayers? Just as Jesus was loaned to Mary and Joseph for His time on earth, our children are loaned to us until God calls them home to Him. We have better surroundings and circumstances, maybe than Mary and Joseph, but we should be as obedient and trusting as they were.
As you go through this Christmas season this year, try to focus only on the Christ child and His family.
Think about all they did outside their comfort zone, just to follow God's plan. Am I that in tune with God? Am I willing to give it all to Him, and no matter what He asks,say, "Yes, Lord!" After all, that little baby with skin on, did far more for me, than I could ever imagine. More and more I will watch Mary and Joseph's example of saying YES!