joseph: an upwardly mobile man
"[Joseph] did as the angel of the Lord had directed him." —Matthew 1:24
St. Joseph often found himself enmeshed in a series of unexpected circumstances. First, God became Lord of His marriage in a way no man could ever have imagined. Then, like a common refugee, Joseph was turned away from decent accommodations when he and Mary most needed them, at the moment of Jesus' birth (Lk 2:7). Then, during a dark night, he had to flee from a government-led assassination plot against his infant Foster-Son (Mt 2:13). At least three times he had to pack up and move his family on short notice. He and Mary had to search in sorrow for three days for Jesus (Lk 2:48). Upon finding Jesus, Joseph then heard Jesus say: "Did you not know I had to be in My Father's house?" (Lk 2:49) Even after learning such amazing humility and childlike trust in God, it must have been difficult for Joseph to hear that he was playing second-fiddle as a father.
For the task of safeguarding the Child Jesus, God chose a man who excelled in hearing and obeying: St. Joseph, the man of faith. Joseph must have spent a lot of time on his knees in fervent prayer for help. The circumstances of his life repeatedly taught him instant obedience, which sprang from his instantly hearing God's commands, which flowed from his constant prayer.
With St. Joseph, let us be upwardly mobile. Let us cultivate the ability to instantly turn to God in prayer, hear His voice, and obey Him in faith. St. Joseph, pray for us.
Prayer: Father, I will trust in You with all my heart and rely not on my own intelligence (Prv 3:5).
Promise: "All depends on faith, everything is grace. Thus the promise holds true for all Abraham's descendants." —Rm 4:16
Praise: St. Joseph was one of the very first to accept the Incarnation, and the first to take Jesus to the Gentiles (Mt 2:14).
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 10, 2017
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