Urban Sprawl

n. The unplanned, uncontrolled spreading of urban development into areas adjoining the edge of a city

Some years ago a young couple from a small, far northern town, moved south to a larger urban area. The community they were from was close nit and many of their family members were still living in that area. They virtually knew no one now. Initially they could only afford a small basement tenement room. The place was crowded, dirty, and like most cities, rat infested. Not only did they not know anyone, but the husband would have to spend hours every day looking for employment. Unfortunately he would have to leave his bride and child alone for long periods of time in that awful apartment.
There were other issues too. The neighborhood was rough, there were roving gangs, thugs and other disreputable types. The neighbors would look at them with suspicion. Their accent revealed that they were not “one of us”. Fortunately, they were believers and had abiding love for each other.

Eventually they would be established and meet some friends. That is, until the husband came home and announced to the family the he now wanted to try moving West. One could only imagine what thoughts went through that bride’s mind! They would now be moving to a completely strange and even larger city, another urban area. Their accents would really give them away this time.

Yes, they would have their faith and each other, BUT God, of course was their provider and protector.  Would they ever see their home town and family? pondered the young bride. This was the life and plan which God had chosen for the couple, Mary & Joseph. She would soon enough become a widow as well.
They didn’t chaff, complain, get mad at God, pine away, or accuse God of life of not being fair. Rather, they submitted to God’s eternal purposes and plans. How is it that they could do that? First of all, God’s grace superintended. Secondly, they truly believed in God’s sovereignty and goodness. Thirdly, they understood that they would be a part of great ness and world-wide change.

Luke 2:4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) Matthew 2:14 When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt: