Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Fayette | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Warren | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Keeping the Faith - Oh the Tangled Web We Must Unweave

ronniemcbrayer300 bKENTUCKY (12/22/12) - Here I am, twisted up in the same desperate situation again this year. It’s not my fault – I swear it’s not. Anticipating this jumbled mess, and having been stuck in it many times before, I planned carefully to avoid it.

A year ago I employed a deliberate strategy to prevent this very disaster, and I put in painstaking efforts to manage my risk. But now I see that my preemptive planning was an obvious failure. Forces beyond my control have conspired against me to deceive and weave a tangled web. My dilemma? The annual hanging of the Christmas lights.

When I put these lights away in the attic last January they were in perfect arranged order. I had rolled and packed them so carefully, I just knew the strings of blinking colors would burst from their boxes unfettered. Instead, every strand – every single strand I tell you – looks like a giant bird’s nest.

How did this happen? Do the electrical cords naturally convulse like this? Is this how Santa’s elves keep themselves busy in the summer months – sneaking into our attics, basements, and storage units to twist and kink our well-organized Christmas decorations? Bah, humbug to it all, I say.

I doubt that Joseph had any holiday lights to string up on the first Christmas, but he had to feel like a big tangled mess had just landed in his lap. One day everything made sense. The next day nothing did. One moment he had a well-conceived plan. The next moment he had a mess on his hands. In January his life was in order, boxed nicely for the future. In December, that same life had devolved into chaos.

One day Joseph was driving nails, building furniture, and doing what carpenters do, and the next he was in the middle of a divine conspiracy. One day he was single, planning a wedding to the fair and beautiful Mary, and the next he was married, preparing to rear a child that was definitely not his. One day Joseph was at home in Nazareth in blissful, warm familiarity, and the next he was fighting off the midnight cold in a strange Bethlehem stable as a new child was born into the world. Forces beyond his control were definitely at work.

What did Joseph do with this tangled web? He went to work untangling every twisted strand of it. He took on the responsibility that had found him. Buoyed by his faith, he believed this child birthed by Mary was the miraculous, chosen One of God – the Messiah.

Joseph chose to play the role of father to a child that was not his. He bore the scandalous stares and the hushed small-town gossip about his wife and his adopted son. He kept driving nails, kept building furniture, and kept doing what carpenters do, unraveling each stubborn strand as he went.

I’m sure there were a few knots that never came undone for Joseph. Like: How can God take the form of a helpless, human baby? Why did God choose Mary to bring this child into the world? Why did God pick him to be the child’s surrogate father? There were no answers to such questions; at least no easy answers.

And for us, there are often not enough answers to go around either, just twisting questions and more impossible knots. What do we do? We sit down on the floor with whatever life, God, Providence, or destiny has dealt to us and we untangle as much as we can.

We live. We take on the responsibility that has found us. We keep doing whatever it is we do; we stay after it. And why? Because if we are going to live life, it will mean persisting through the confusion; there’s no other choice.

So when your well-ordered, well-kept life explodes into a tangled mess – and it will – what are you going to do? You can point fingers, blame others, curse the Fates, ask a million unanswerable questions, or you can get on with untangling things as you go.  Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, speaker, and author of multiple books. You can read more and receive regular e-columns in your inbox at www.ronniemcbrayer.me.


Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

In Other News...

Multi-Agencies Partner for National 'Take Back' Night

HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (4/22/14) — The Madisonville Police Department will be working in collaboration with Kentucky State… Read More

Murray Man Charged with Additional Sexual Offenses

MURRAY, Ky. (4/22/14) — According to Murray Police Department, Kwen Trice, 30, of Murray was charged with 5 additional… Read More
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

April 22, 2014 9591

18 EPA Earth Day Events Take Action on…

in News by EPA
April 21, 2014 5058

Meet The Hopkins County Magistrate…

in News by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
April 22, 2014 3734

Three Juveniles Charged in Connection…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 21, 2014 3491

Fire Destroys Old Tobacco Building in…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
April 21, 2014 3078

'Heath & Molly' Benefit Concert…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

April 22, 2014 2391

Madisonville Woman Charged with Internet…

in Top Stories by Christopher Rogers
April 19, 2014 1560

Fifth Third on Main Street Comes Down

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
April 19, 2014 1411

MPD Arrests Juveniles for Recent Rash of…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
April 19, 2014 1087

Louisville Man Charged in Madisonville…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
April 23, 2014 675

MPD Detectives Investigate Hanson…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

April 21, 2014 3078

'Heath & Molly' Benefit Concert…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 21, 2014 1463

Owensboro Chamber Plans First ‘Lunch…

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 22, 2014 662

DCPS Among Top 100 Nationally for Finance…

in News by Lora Wimsatt
April 22, 2014 484

New Hwy. 54 Traffic Light to Go Into…

in News by Keith Todd
April 22, 2014 248

Owensboro Museum of Fine Art Plans Exhibit

in Top Stories by Mary Hood

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

April 22, 2014 3734

Three Juveniles Charged in Connection…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 21, 2014 3491

Fire Destroys Old Tobacco Building in…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
April 21, 2014 1735

One Injured in Rosewood Wreck

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 22, 2014 1039

Muhlenberg Last Day of School

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 22, 2014 991

Parsons Named Student of the Month

in Top Stories by Joyce Riggs

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)

SurfKY Owensboro News Bureau
920 Frederica St. / Suite 210  •  Owensboro, KY 42301  •  270.683-8060 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 06social 21social 22social 04social 03