When Things Go Sideways
By Kevin P. Lett
Reference: Matthew 1:18-25 NASB
What do you do when life’s on track, then everything shifts and goes sideways? What happens when you’re like Joseph: operating in God’s will, yet struggling to comprehend God’s plan and infinite wisdom in your circumstances? Have you been there? I have.
Some of us are experiencing this situation with God right now; believing God’s blessings are exceedingly great, though presently unrecognizable. The truth revealed to us seems beyond our comprehension.
Joseph had a tough decision to make. Mary, still a virgin, was pregnant before they consummated their marriage. This tested his faith to the core. Not only did he have to wrestle with the fact that she was pregnant, but he had to find the faith to accept the child was conceived through the Holy Spirit and was the Son of God as foretold through prophecy.
Joseph had to decide if he was going to focus on what he could see naturally and what others in the culture would think and say about Mary or dismiss all of that and trust God’s plan completely. This was a harsh reality and by appearances, overwhelmingly scandalous. What would you do in Joseph’s position?
I can relate to how Joseph must have felt when I married Naima. From the beginning, we both had great expectations of what our lives would be like together with God at the helm. Before marriage, God gave us the same vision separately of what we could accomplish together through Him, but before we could start down that path I had to fight for my life, my marriage, and my faith.
Cancer threatened my life. Suddenly, we realized that there were huge mountains in our path. This reality didn’t look at all like what we thought it would be, and our faith was being tested like never before. Like Joseph, I chose to put my trust in God and move forward despite the challenges before me. Now 15+ years later, I’m grateful to still have my health, my marriage and my faith intact; all of them stronger than before.
I did not have all the answers then and don’t have all the answers now, but I don’t have to because I have a relationship with the One who knows all, sees all, and is well acquainted with my sufferings. I know that I can trust God with my future. I still believe God for supernatural blessings to come, and I still believe in what God wants us to accomplish together in this city.
There are times we may find ourselves in unfamiliar places that challenge our faith and require God’s supernatural stimulation. However, with God all things are possible and He is right here with us in the midst of our struggles.
As we reflect on this historic event of Christ’s birth, how do you relate to Joseph? What are you trusting God to accomplish supernaturally that may not quite line up with your natural experience and expectations to date?
Be encouraged. When things are shifting, God is moving. And it’s all good!