5"x7" Oil on Canvas
Michael Card penned it best when he wrote a song from Joseph's perspective. "How can a man be Father to the Son of God?" was one of the most powerful lines in that song. Whatever feelings he had as a first-time parent must have been compounded ten-fold with the feelings of inadequacy of being a parent to the Messiah. But I think Joseph's love for his new family and trust in God helped to give him confidence.
This is the first of four paintings on the Nativity. In this painting, Joseph is kneeling in the presence of the new born Messiah. He is also resting with a staff. A tool for traveling and protection, this staff serves as a symbol to remind us of his need for support. As future pieces to this Nativity story are revealed, you will soon see that his gaze is different from Mary's. Joseph is posed to appear to be looking at either Jesus or gazing outward. Joseph could be lovingly looking upon Jesus. But he also could be looking at the world around him—wondering what will be coming next in their wild adventure. He could be wondering how he is going to provide food and shelter for this new family. He could be just trying to understand where he fits into this incredible God moment.
Ultimately, like all new parents, I believe Joseph did his best with what he had—one day at a time. With the support of his wife, his family and friends, Joseph took on the challenge of parenthood. He worked hard. He made mistakes. He trusted in God. He loved Jesus. And in doing all of these things, Joseph helped to raise a baby boy to become the Son of God.