As the young couple began their lives as newlyweds, it wasn’t what they expected it to be. They expected a celebration of family and friends. The Jewish culture celebrates well, and they looked forward to an overwhelming joyous occasion. It would be a ceremony focused upon a shared belief in God, honoring a covenant that they would make in front of their family and loved ones. There would be joy. There would be laughter. There would be hope and possibility for the future.
This wasn’t how she expected it to be. The young couple still gathered in front of family and friends and made a covenant before God, but there was uncertainty. As Mary walked down the aisle, she wondered if her pregnancy was showing. It has been hidden well during the past three months at Elizabeth’s house. Now, she was back home, and the whispers and disapproving glances would begin. As she stood with Joseph, she admired his faith in God’s incredible, life-altering plan. His faith was so strong, and he was so courageous. She knew he would stand by her, but the upcoming months and years would be difficult. How do you raise the son of God? It seemed ludicrous to even consider. Rumors would fly. They would be shamed. Having a child out of wedlock was shameful in their small village. Who else but a few family members and close friends would ever believe this child was God’s son? This wasn’t how she expected it to be.
This wasn’t what he expected it to be. As Joseph stood with Mary before their loved ones, he was nervous. The dream made it clear that the child growing in Mary was the coming Messiah. How do you become a father to the very son of God? What could he teach him? How would they handle the hurled accusations, whispered slander and the distancing of some gathered before them right now? What would the next few months hold? What would the next twenty years contain? There were so many questions. This wasn’t how he expected it to be.
Scandal. Disgrace. Rumor. Betrayal. These actions and emotions weren’t what they expected. Yet, it was their reality. God changed the expected plot of their story, but the new story he wrote was the greatest story ever told. He took their scandal, disgrace, rumor and betrayal and turned it into joy, confirmed faith, love and the blessing of seeing Jesus grow into his role and ministry. It wasn’t what they expected. It was even better.
As you read this, you may be experiencing a “plot twist” in your story. What you were expecting from your life hasn’t been fulfilled. You might be afraid, uncertain, stressed and even a little angry at these unmet expectations. God understands it. God understood the concerns of Mary and Joseph. Don’t give up. Keep allowing God to write your story. What He’s writing isn’t what you expected. It’s even better. Wait and see what God will do.