The Faith of Saint Joseph

Monday, December 18, 2017

Readings for December 18

All Saints for Today

[T]he angel of the Lord appeared to [Joseph] in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.  For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her.  She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”  Matthew 1:20b-21

Saint Joseph is a man that we know little about, but think about the importance of his role in salvation history.  He was entrusted with the Son of God as his little child.  At first, he was confused about how Mary could have gotten pregnant, but upon receiving the words of the angel in a dream, he accepted this Child as his own and cared for Him with a father’s love.

It’s significant to note that Saint Joseph embraced the Christ Child because of a dream.  But was it only a dream?  We all have many dreams and some of them are strange and nonsensical.  So why did Saint Joseph rely upon the authenticity of this dream?

The answer to this question is quite simple.  Even though the dream he had was just that – a dream, it was also accompanied by the gift of faith.  Joseph knew, with a certainty beyond human reason, that the voice of God had spoken to him and he responded with generous faith.

We may not have dreams through which God speaks to us in the form of an angel, but God does speak to us all day long.  He speaks directly to our minds and hearts, and also through the care and mediation of countless hosts of angels in various ways.  The angels of God are constantly bringing us divine messages and inspirations.  The question is whether or not we are listening.

Listening to the voice of God, through the mediation of the angels, is not about us seeing or hearing the angels speak, literally.  Rather, it’s a matter of discerning this language of love spoken to us and calling us to faith. 

Listen in the silence of your heart, this day, and allow yourself to follow the glorious witness of Saint Joseph as he responded to our Lord’s will with perfect faith and trust.

Lord, I long to hear Your sweet voice.  I long to know all that You command of me and all that You inspire me to embrace in life.  Give me the grace I need, to follow every inspiration in life so that I may fulfill Your perfect and holy will.  Jesus, I trust in You.

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