Updated: Apr 22, 2021
Are you a Christian entrepreneur who wants more than a job, and wants more than a business, but wants to make a difference in this world?
You know God has called you to start a business, but you don't know what's missing.
You're just like most of the rest of us, then.
Jesus knows struggle. He knows all the feelings that we have. Not just because He’s God, but also because life’s circumstances caused Him to go through all life’s troubles that we have as well.
Let’s look at the first Christmas to see how struggle played a significant role.
According to Jewish culture, Mary and Joseph were engaged (it was almost like a marriage at that point, so more than engaged). They were preparing for marriage already, and God had other plans for them. God was going to bring Himself into the world through Mary. The curse from the Garden of Eden was on the seed of man, so there wasn’t a way for God to come into the world by using Joseph, or else Jesus would have been born into sin. What happens next is amazing.
In Biblical times, adultery was forbidden by the law (and even punishable by death). Joseph had the chance to send Mary away, as it appeared that she had been unfaithful to him. While Mary didn’t give birth to Jesus out of wedlock (as in having cheated on Joseph), God used this very out-of-ordinary circumstance to change Jesus’ human past. There would have certainly been rumors spread about his family, leaving the family in a very unusual predicament.
This was Jesus’ human past, perhaps having people look down on him and his family. This is what Jesus went through and is, therefore, able to identify with us as humans. But it wasn’t just Jesus who went through this, his entire family, which must have included at least four siblings (since the Bible talks about his brothers and sisters, plural). They all went through the struggle because it was God’s Will. It was predetermined that they would have this struggle, and there was nothing they did that was wrong.
More parts of the Christmas story show struggle (though these were more Mary and Joseph’s struggles, not struggles related directly to Jesus). Joseph was responsible for traveling hundreds of miles from Nazareth to Bethlehem with Mary, who was pregnant (Luke 2). There were likely dangers on the way, but even the journey without hazards would have been a hard struggle, as likely Mary would have had to ride on the donkey. Another struggle was finding Mary and Joseph’s place to stay (as there was no room). Mary was about to give birth, and not finding a place to stay would have been very difficult for them. After the Wise Men came, Joseph received word from God in a dream that he had to flee to Egypt. Traveling that distance would have been hard, especially with a newborn child (and, again, likely with a donkey). The next time King Herod killed every baby boy too and under was a huge struggle for Israel. Matthew 2:13-16.
This Christmas, remember us that the first Christmas had struggles, just as many of us struggled during this pandemic. For some, the business has slowed down. For others, their businesses had to stop the way it functioned. So, they have had to find other ways to do business or find another business to be involved in.
The struggle that Jesus had means that you have an advocate with Jesus, who identifies with everything you’re going through. How often do we, as Christians, try to fix our problems instead of going to the One who can help us? When we face struggles, we have to remember that no struggle is as big as God. Jesus will have the last say in any of your problems. And, if you see anyone struggling this year, be sure to share with them this good news, that they can access the Creator, who also went through struggles and can identify with their struggles as well.
This article is written by Jeremy G. Woods, CEO of FaithVenture Media and President of Potter’s House Ministries Romania.