She was laughing, her eyes a bright twinkle that outshone the stars in the sky. They mesmerized him. Are her eyes always this bright? As he watched her, she began to glow. Mary? What is happening to you? Wait – it isn’t Mary – what is happening? Why is everything getting so bright?
That was not Mary’s voice. That was unlike any voice he had ever heard before – magnificent, and reverberating.
“Joseph, do not be afraid!”
As the light began to grow brighter, Joseph found himself unable to move. His chest tightened in fear. His eyes, although closed, were blinded by the light shining around him.
“Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
Joseph sat up in bed, his chest heaving. He searched his room for the source of light, but found only darkness. A dream? No, it was much more than that. He knew with all his heart that he had just experienced something wonderful. He could still feel the presence of holiness, could still hear the angel’s voice:
“…what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.”
“Mary told the truth!” Joseph was at once giddy with relief and remorseful that he had not believed her.
“…She will give birth to a son.”
She is to have a son? But not just any son … the Son of God. The Messiah! And I am to be this child’s father? I will have the privilege of raising him as my own? I am not worthy of such a responsibility. The thought of it sent his heart racing once again. Mary was the one who this was directly affecting and yet she seemed to be at such peace about it. Of course, she has had at least three months to accept it, he reasoned. He had only just heard yesterday. He groaned as he remembered his outburst. Will she accept my apology now? Will she understand why I was so upset? Will Heli welcome me again at their door after the way I treated them? Joseph jumped up from his cot and threw on a fresh tunic. A sense of urgency propelled him to hurry to the home of Heli. He would go to Mary at once. Before the day ended, he would make sure they were officially man and wife.