People love being right. It is only natural. Even the most good-hearted person doesn’t like to be wrong – though the good-hearted person might give up being right for the sake of others. Some years ago I read a book entitled, “As a Gentleman Would Say.” It advised that it is often better to relinquish being right and save ones honor and that of others than to press one’s “right” to the detriment of all.
I think one could say that Joseph was truly a gentleman – not in the phony Victorian way based on birth but rather based on character. Joseph could have had Mary put to death, but even before the dream that assured Joseph of Mary’s purity, he chose to do the honorable and kind thing toward her.
Too often in this world people will fight to the death when they are right (or think they are) and often for the most mundane things. Bottom line is you need to – “Know when to hold ’em; know when to fold ’em.” You pick your battles. You don’t always have to be right. Sometimes the “right” thing to do is give the other person the privilege of being right even when you know they are wrong.
Joseph could easily have exercised his right to be right and saved his honor by publicly denouncing Mary for what he believed to be her infidelity. No one would have disputed it or faulted him for it. Yet, he chose not to do what was right and acceptable in the society, choosing rather to do what was right, even though to some it might have looked like the wrong things to do.
Heavenly Father, help me to be gracious in all things, to do the right thing always, to think of others before myself, as Jesus thought of others when he gave his life to redeem us. In Jesus name I pray, AMEN.