A Christmas carol says that this is “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”, but for those who have attended the Simbang Gabi Masses, the many Gospels tell us that the lives of people who were related to Jesus were affected and disturbed. Their lives have been altered to the point of a crisis. There was a change of plan:
- Joseph was supposed to get married to Mary but found out that she was with child that was not his
- Zechariah did not believe what the angel Gabriel said, so became mute and deaf
- Elizabeth at a very old age was found with child
- Mary planned to get married to Joseph until Angel Gabriel told her that she would be the mother of the Messiah
Yet, what gave them the strength to deal with change in life? Deep down in their hearts, they knew that God is faithful. In fact, all these changes that they are experiencing were because of God’s Plan. Where did this plan come from?
When Adam and Eve sinned, the very first promise was to send a Messiah. At God’s appointed time, He sent His beloved Son. Since Mary, Joseph, Zechariah, and Elizabeth were all part of that plan, their lives were changed and altered to the point of crisis.
At some point in our lives, like Joseph, Zechariah, Elizabeth, and Mary, our lives are also changed, plans are altered, and because of the fear it brings, we are in crisis. How then do we hold on to God’s Faithfulness?
- God does not change. We human beings can be fickle-minded. One day it is like this, the next day it is like that. One day we are mad and unforgiving, the next day we have softened. God who is love, does not change. Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Hence his faithfulness does not depend on whether we are good or bad. A promise is a promise.
- God’s Ways and Timing are Different. Often when we pray we want an instant response, but God’s time and ways are different. Before Jesus was born, it took 49 generations. God is faithful, even when He seems quiet, we have to always be Hopeful. Jesus said, “pray unceasingly.” Not that God will change His mind but that we remain hopeful and at peace.
- His Plan is the Best. All of us are here in this world because God has a plan. His plan is the best. Hence when He disturbs us it is only because He is leading us to where He wants us to be. That is why He disturbed the lives of Mary, Joseph, Zechariah, and Elizabeth.
As we celebrate Christmas, may one of the Christmas messages always stick in our hearts and minds. In a world wherein we human beings can be ever-changing, fortunes can be ever-changing, relationships can be ever-changing – but God is always faithful.