After Jesus' birth, his earthly parents looked upon him with a love we should imitate.
Christmas gives us a perfect opportunity to use our imagination during prayer. Especially for parents, it can be a powerful experience to meditate on the tender love Joseph and Mary had for their newborn child.
In a 19th-century prayer book, the author looks to the holy couple and ponders what was going on in their hearts. First we can imagine the immense love Mary must have had for the infant Jesus.
It is Jesus, the great God of heaven, who has come to live and suffer as a little Child, that we might see how much He loves us and how He longs to be with us.He is not alone. A gentle young Mother bends over Him. Her eyes are full of love and worship.A tender-watchful Mother.Earth has never before seen such a mother. There never can be another like to her, so pure, so holy, like a spotless white lily-flower amongst the dark thorns of earth.She has no better place this night wherein to lay her new-born Babe.It is Mary, our Mother Mary.His Mother and our Mother for ever, evermore.
After meditating on the love Mary had for Jesus, we can turn our thoughts to Joseph and the wonder and awe he must have felt.
A grave peaceful man watches over them, calm in the midst of all this scene of poverty.Nothing can disturb him, nothing daunts him, for his heart belongs to God, to that little Child whose Foster-father he is henceforth.It is Joseph, our own dear Saint Joseph.How we must love the Child Jesus if we have hearts at all wherewith to love!
Joseph must have had much to contemplate on that Christmas night. He had never expected to be the father-guardian of the Messiah, entrusted with the task of raising the Savior of the world!
It is providential that the Christmas season has an “octave,” eight days during which the Church celebrates Christmas Day, pondering the many mysteries revealed on that night.
For us, let us try to savor that Christmas night and mediate on the holy parents of Jesus, placing ourselves with them, even holding the Baby Jesus in our own arms. That peace they felt should be with us, and hopefully stay with us for the rest of the year.