JOSEPH, AN UPRIGHT MAN
One of the most quiet protagonists in the Gospels is Joseph, the husband of Mary. And only one word describes him: UPRIGHT. What is the meaning of being upright? Let us start from the traits of Joseph that prompted the Gospel writer to call him upright. We meet him first when Mary was betrothed to him. When he found out that Mary was with child, he did not just close his eyes but acknowledged that he had to somehow divorce her according to the law but he wanted to protect Mary so he was planning to do it as quietly as possible. The first trait that is shown is TRUTH, AUTHENTICITY. One has to face the truth even how unpalatable it is. But he was COMPASSIONATE about it. An upright person does not want to destroy another person. Then when he was told that the child is not of any human father but was conceived by the Holy Spirit, he then assumed the RESPONSIBILITY of taking care of the child of her mother Mary. Then the next scene was the warning about the threat to Jesus’ life. He was DOCILE to the promptings of the Holy Spirit and took care of the safety of his charges. In the finding of Jesus in the temple, he showed CONCERN for the welfare of the lost Child. But when he realized that Jesus was “doing His Father’s business”, like Mary, HE KEPT THE THINGS HE DID NOT UNDERSTAND AND PONDERED THEM IN HIS HEART. In all his actions and attitude he showed us what UPRIGHTNESS is all about.
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