Well, it’s officially the Christmas Season. People are beginning to decorate home & hearth. Practice for Christmas cantatas & plays have been going on for weeks now, & I am still brooding about how to celebrate.
I have been thinking about the first Christmas & wondering how I would have responded to Christ’s birth. What part would I have played in the drama of God becoming man??
Maybe I would have been one of the shepherds. I can relate to them. I am living in the middle of nowhere (40 miles to the nearest Walmart) tending my little flock. It’s a quiet life, but satisfying. It would have been amazing to be surrounded by a host of angels singing praises to God! What prompted God to tell THEM first? I want to be like the shepherds. Steady enough to be trusted with the Gospel. I want God to show me new & wonderful things by His spirit & then share it with the world.
The part of the Magi is very enticing. They are rich! No, that’s not it. They were scholars. Watching & waiting for the King! Yes, I would love to be a Magi. I should be searching the scriptures & watching for the signs of His coming. I need to start packing my camel……
I would love to play the part of Mary. Not questioning, just trusting & rejoicing in the promise of His coming.
Joseph was just an average Joe. (Pun intended.) He was probably alot like my husband. Kind, giving, slow to anger, strong but gentle. Joseph is not mentioned very often in Scripture, but we have to assume a few things about him. The fact that he was going to put Mary away privately sounds like he was a kind man just trying to do the right thing. I don’t believe that the Father would have chosen a selfish, ungodly man to be Jesus’ earthly dad. God spoke to him through dreams & angels. Cool! I want to dream dreams & be in tune to the voice of the Father. I want to play the role that God has chosen for me, to be just an average chick trying to do the right thing.
Herod & I have alot in common. Admittedly he was a king, but under the crown he was just a guy with issues. He was afraid to loose power. He didn’t want to relinquish his power to Jesus. That sounds a lot like me. I have a hard time letting go of the reins, & I keep grasping at whatever I can to regain control. Oh, Jesus let me loose control to You!
Now the innkeeper is a guy that I understand. He opened his barn to strangers. It sounds noble, but if a pregnant girl comes to my door I hope that I’ll give her MY bed. Too often I do part of what is expected, but I don’t give Jesus the best that I have. I’ve opened my heart to Him, but I’ve delegated Him to the back, out of sight & not having preeminence in my life.
Each of the characters in the story were real, flesh & blood people. It’s easy to forget that because we’ve heard the story so often. It’s easy to forget that it’s not just a story when little 7 year olds portray the shepherds & the baby Jesus is a doll.
Father, help me to remember that you really loved us enough to send your Son. Help me to remember that you used average, normal people to facilitate the redemption of man. That the only One in the story that wasn’t average was the Only Begottten of the Father, Jesus! Help me to remember that Jesus living in me changes me from average to a tool that can save the world! Help me to trust, rejoice, share the gospel, do the right thing, relinquish control of my life & surroundings & to watch for the coming of Your Precious Son. Let the story of Christmas change me & make me a new creation again. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.