In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register.
So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.
After Mary returned home to Nazareth, a decree was made that everyone had to return to their own town to be registered. Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph, so Mary and Joseph set out on the long journey to Bethlehem because Joseph was a descendant of David. I can’t imagine this would have been easy, with Mary pregnant, with the things they would have needed to take with them. There was no transport like we have today, and would have likely taken them four days.
We are each on a journey. Some parts of our journey are more challenging than others. Sometimes our journeys have sections of great joy and beauty, but there can also be times of great sadness and difficulty, such as when going through the bereavement of a loved one. As Christians, we believe that the journey is important, and that God remains with us through it all. It is through the journey that we can find healing and hope, and our character is formed, even in the most difficult of situations.
The last few years, and current times, are difficult for many. Let’s pray for God to be at work in our lives, and across our nation and the world as we journey through life.
‘Everlasting God, we thank you that you are working in the good times and the bad. Thank you that you use the journey to help form us and bring hope and healing. We pray as we look back and as we look forward, that you will be at work in our life journey’s. Will you meet us in the joy and the pain. We ask for wisdom for world leaders as they lead nations, and help us navigate the current times. Will you be at work in it all we pray. Amen’
If you have experienced a bereavement, it can be helpful to walk that journey with others. We are running a bereavement course starting in January.