For those of you who are parents, think back to the time when you had your first child.
What was that first week like?
You had to learn everything: how to hold your child, how to feed your child, how to soothe your child to sleep. Everything was a first for you and your new baby.
Now imagine everything that you went through, and add a few challenges.
- You have to leave your home while pregnant, and head to a town 65 miles away to register for a census.
- You must travel through the Judean desert during the winter, when it’s in the 30’s and raining. At night, it’s freezing.
- The total trip will take four to five days. (And no, you can’t take the SUV. Lots of walking and donkey riding ahead.)
- Your child is born in a carved-out cave or a stable for animals.
- Oh, and throw in that an Angel appears to you in a dream and tells you to flee to Egypt in order to protect the life of your newborn son. Who just so happens to be the Son of God.
Even in our wildest imagination, we can’t fathom what the Holy Family endured over 2000 years ago. We know it was hard. And we know that they sacrificed a lot to bring Jesus into the world.
Because of the actions of these two people, Mary and Joseph, our world changed forever.
Think about that next time you have to change a diaper or two.
Take some time this week and say a prayer for families everywhere. Pray for peace in living rooms, neighborhoods, and cities in which they live.