READ: Luke 2:1-35
Yesterday, we talked about the fact that life is messy. Another way to put that is to say that “life is not sanitized.” As much as we might like it to be, it is not. Moreover, as much as we have tried to sanitize the birth of Christ, it was not either.
Jesus was not born in a warm cozy stable. He did not sleep on soft, clean straw. The animals were not well-groomed and deodorized. It was a cave that doubled as a stable. It was dark and dank and smelly and dirty. Flies probably swarmed around piles of manure.
Think further that Mary gave birth to the greatest gift the world has ever known as one half of an unwed, homeless couple many miles from friends and family. What can we take from all of this? In the midst of life’s messiness, the fear, the uncertainty, and the pain, Christ is there. And He makes all the difference!
The gifts we seem to remember most are the ones that come when life is hard and we are feeling desperate. Can you think of a gift you received during such a time? What was it?
How did God announce His presence to the shepherds during that cold and dark winter’s night?
In the midst of the great pain of childbirth, and the fear and uncertainty regarding their surroundings, Joseph and Mary had God right there with them. How are you comforted to know that during the tough times, God is right there with you?
Thank God because He promises to never fail or forsake you
Confess to God, if necessary, despairing in your difficult circumstances instead of trusting and relying on Him
Ask God to fill you with the knowledge of His presence
Ask God to guide you toward a closer more intimate walk with Him