The Christmas Story

I’ve been thinking about Mary and Joseph a lot recently.  Especially Joseph who doesn’t always get that much press in the Christmas story but who, I’m reflecting, had a critical role to play in the events that unfolded.

In thinking about Mary, I’ve been reflecting on the quality of her receptivity to the inspiration that came through the angel message.  Here she was, a young, unmarried woman of no particular importance who was told she was to be the custodian of the birth of a very special baby.  It is inspiring for me how ready she was to take on this very important role.   She was not afraid, nor did she doubt that what she had been told would come true and that she would be taken care of in the process. She calmly and humbly accepted what she had been told and continued to listen for the next steps to take, in following through with the task with which she had been entrusted.

No less important was Joseph’s role in the unfolding events.  He too, had been listening to his angels, being led to take Mary for his wife.  At this time, it would have been scandalous to take on a wife who was already pregnant and doubtless he was concerned for his reputation, as well as his ability to properly care for Mary at this time of her great need.   So much would need to be taken care of – the need to pay taxes, to find appropriate shelter for Mary and the new baby, and the development of his new role as a husband and father. Yet, despite these fears, he was also able to be receptive to the spiritual inspiration and rise to the challenge to give Mary the support she needed to birth this new idea.

I’ve been reflecting on this story in relation to my own life, and in the lives of friends and family.  None of us are, of course, entrusted with a task as significant as the one that Mary and Joseph faced yet we are all, in our own ways, called upon to exhibit those same qualities of trust, receptivity and the ability to move forward in continual listening for the next steps in the birth of new ideas.

Recently, I’ve been faced with needing to follow through on inspiration I’ve been receiving in many areas of my life.  Doubt and fear have often reared their heads and it’s been tempting to try to take control of the situation, trying too hard to do things my way, instead of humbly allowing the inspiration I’ve received to unfold in it’s own way, and in it’s own time.  Yet, I know from past experience that it is only when I relinquish control over something that the steps needed to move forward unfold effortlessly in ways I could not possibly have outlined or imagined myself.

I’m also learning something else in this reflection on Mary and Joseph, especially in terms of Joseph’s role.

Sometimes it seems that the unfoldment of a particular idea or inspiration is dependent not only on my own co-operation, but also on the support and collaboration of others.  Whether that comes in the form of a friend, a boss or employee, a landlord or estate agent, or a family member or partner.  We often need the support of others to move forward with something, just like Mary did with Joseph.  I’m learning that humility also calls for a childlike trust that those affected by or included in the steps we have been inspired by are also, themselves, listening to their angels and can be guided to do what is necessary to support that idea.

Whether you are also waiting to give birth to a new idea, whether it is a baby, a new company, the creation of a new home, a new travel adventure or the beginning of a new relationship, we can all trust that everyone involved has the receptivity to their own angels, the confidence to move forward with the steps they have been inspired to take……and that we are all able to work together to write our collective ‘Christmas story’.

With love and best wishes for a Merry Christmas and an inspiring, joy-filled new year,


Published by Caroline Watson

Founder of Hua Dan, a China-based social enterprise that uses the power of participation in theatre as a tool for personal and social transformation. Young Global Leader 2011 of the World Economic Forum. Writer, speaker and entrepreneur.

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