In the morning, with the sun still behind the Mountains of Moab, Joseph arose, adjusted his tunic, and fed the animal. He worked quietly,adjusting and balancing the goatskin and food bag, before awakening his wife, Mary. He felt such enormous compassion for this girl, but couldn’t explain it……
Joseph was a medium-sized man with deep brown curls hanging to his shoulders. His hair was thick and parted in the middle and his beard thin, although he stroked it as though it were full.
The road was busy at dawn. The rich Greeks traveled south in sedan chairs, the servants shouldering the yokes easily. en route to trade with the rich Jews. Some of the traffic came from as far away as Egypt, and these merchants were laden with fabrics and metal objects and expensive spices. Sometimes Joseph had to wait until he could find room between parties going south. The road, it seemed, was always alive. [Jim Bishop]
[Walking was the most popular mode of transportation and many people couldn’t afford a pack animal..so in that aspect Mary and Joseph were fortunate.]
[I think of Mary being heavy with child, nearing the time of birth and sleeping on the ground, as well as riding a donkey for a great distance. Did she remember the angel Gabriel’s words to her during this time??? That she was Blessed and favored before all other women? I have been heavy with child and found it difficult to imagine Mary’s journey.]
This morning Joseph led Mary and the donkey into the wilderness. It was twenty miles to Bethany and from there, three miles to the heart of Jerusalem. A man with strong legs could walk it, leading an animal and a woman, before sundown.
The wilderness is a barren place in the mountains, where nothing of worth grows and the tiny peaks look-alike, white and chalky, a place where bandits await. Joseph stopped at the top of the rise. Mary looked up, a tired child with eyes partly conscious of the scene….[Jim Bishop]
To read part one click HERE