My Hope

Today I have the joy of bringing you another exceptional guest post. This one is written from the perspective of the innkeeper's wife and it touches my heart in a place that is real and raw. I know you will love it as much as I do and will want to read so much more of her heart here.

by Heatherly Sylvia

I hear them whispering.

I don't dare join them- in case they are right- but it is hard not to hear their gossip, their questions, their accusations.

"...only pledged, not married..."

"...angels spoke.... that's likely"

"...should be ashamed..."

"...surprised he stayed..."

When she left town to visit relatives – suddenly and without a word – we all wondered, but it's not unusual to visit one's cousins. Then the whispers traveled back towards town, "Elizabeth is with child." 

We were shocked beyond speech – it was rumored Zechariah was too, if the gossips could be believed.

It seemed unlikely that the story was true. Whispers of Abraham and his Sarah echoed, truth entwined with the obvious fabrication of wives and mothers with nothing better to do than to speak of others'
concerns as if they were a children's tale. And then...

It became apparent rather quickly that Elizabeth's rumored blessing was not going to be the biggest news on market day anymore...

As we have traveled these dusty roads toward David's city, ruled by Caesar and the census call, I've struggled – wanting ask her, wanting to amble beside her, as we used to in our childhood, at our mothers' sides at the market, in the fields; wishing I could share my news without the fear of the gossips that travel the same path, the same pace:

"Mary, I believe you."
"Mary, I'm scared for you."
"Mary, does Joseph really believe you?"

"Mary, I am pregnant, too. I am scared. I feel ill. The way is so long, the travel bothersome, the smells overwhelming, the food unpalatable...

"Mary, how do you look so peaceful?"

I am afraid to ask. Although their contract has been signed and Joseph calls her wife, the gossips continue. They whisper of angel's words and YHWH's blessing.

Why isn't she terrified?

What does she know that we do not?

Where does her hope lie?

Where can I get even a piece of the peace she has?

As she rubs her large belly, when no one is looking, Joseph lays his hand on hers. They share a secret smile and I feel the intruder as a moment passes between them. There is a spark I've never felt, a joy I've never known.

Where does their hope lie?

When news comes days later, shared over the rattle of carts and the braying of donkeys, I learn that her Hope was laid in a feeding trough.

I ignore my fear, and among the shepherds and animals I gain the strength to ask her.

Her tired smile is serene, her eyes sparkle with joy,
"My hope is in YHWH. My Hope is YHWH."

Heatherly Lane Sylvia is a mom, wife, homeschooler, speaker, aspiring writer, and apprentice grace-giver. Her greatest desire is to live a life following after God with abandon, and she hopes to be a blessing to as many people as she can while she figures out exactly how to do that. Het is passionate, loud, addicted to books, and loves her friends, old and new. She adores the blogosphere and would love to “meet” you there. She’s also pretty sure that blog comments and tweets are her love language. Check out her blog A Pinkdaisy Life or follow her on Twitter @Pinkdaisyjane


  1. This is a great little story, Heatherly!Elizabeth and Mary had some tough opposition to overcome, and you demonstrated this beautifully. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Wonderful insight to that relationship between Elizabeth and Mary! I am sure they had alot to talk about. But isn't it amazing the angel told Mary that Elizabeth was also pregnant? A "me to" moment in the making! Merry Christmas!!

  3. It shows that God designed us to need that fellowship of kindred spirits and situation, too, I think.

  4. Great post. IF He is our hope, we can climb any mountain.

  5. Simply beautiful, Heatherly. Thanks for capturing the mood so vividly.

  6. Gary, thanks for stopping by and encouraging Heatherly! She is indeed a writer with massive talent!

  7. Thank you Shanda and Gary for your kind words.

    Shanda- I agree. I don't know how people do it without the hope of Christ!


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