“And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.” – Luke 2:7
Over two thousand years ago, a young woman gave birth to a child under very difficult conditions because no one opened their home for her and her husband. This child grew up to die for the sins of the human race, including those who did not make room in their home for His parents when Mary was giving birth to Him. Two thousand years later, many still struggle to make room for Him during the time when they celebrate His birth.
The account of why Jesus’ mother was relegated to giving birth in a manger, a place where animals are fed, varies based on which commentary you read. But most suggest that it was because it occurred during the time of the census. All the rooms were already taken by those who had traveled to register in the census. So this may not have been a deliberate rejection of a pregnant woman or a poor family who needed help, but rather in the busyness of all that was happening and the limited resources available, this family was overlooked. As a result, Mary and Joseph found themselves using a place where animals were fed as a delivery room.
This circumstance, as troublesome as it may be, does provide us a great lesson in humility and contentment. As we reflect upon our own needs, we tend to see the best of things as a sign of God’s presence in our lives. In the manger, God was not just present, but it was His own birth, and He had the power to choose the birth date to be during a less busy time or to be in the best birthing facility of the day. But no, He chose a circumstance that resorted to Him being born in a manger. Greatness does not always appear in fine packages.
However, this eternal lesson still does not serve as an adequate excuse as to why no one made room for the Savior’s birth. The fact that this day in history, when greatness was entering the world, and eternity was coming into time, was missed by this particular community shows the blindness of their hearts and their lack of discernment of the times and seasons. May we not be so blind today that in the midst of the busyness of the season, with all the commercialism, festivities, and our business activities, we miss the true meaning of Christmas. At the time when we celebrate the birth of our Savior and honor each other as a family, may we be as Mary and Joseph who, in midst of very difficult circumstances, made the Savior a priority and honored each other.
Have you made room in your heart, your home, and your business for Christ this holiday season? Let’s not make the same mistake as others have made. Let’s make room for the Savior this holiday season. Here are some things you may consider doing this holiday season to make room for the Savior:
Study the birth of Christ as a family
Go to church as a family
Take time for your family and friends
Be a special blessing to your employees and customers
Contribute your time and money to ministries that are realizing His purposes
Share the Gospel with someone who does not know Him yet
Be especially sensitive to those in need
Forgive those whom you have a grudge against
Give words of encouragement and affirmation to others
Enjoy the season
Smile, laugh, and have fun
My prayer for you today is that you will seek God for ways to make room for Christ during this holiday season so that you may experience the true meaning of Christmas.