“And she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.”
– Luke 2:7
It’s December 20. Let’s say you’re going to the mall later today because you forgot to get a present for your great aunt who you’re going to see tomorrow at a family Christmas gathering. After waiting for ten minutes to turn into the parking lot, you drive around in circles for another half hour, politely waiting for a spot and losing a few too aggressive drivers who angrily “stole” the ones you were blinkering for. When you finally get into the store, you walk around and behold sparse and picked over racks. You finally find a suitable gift and you hurry to the checkout counter, only to see that there are people lined up to the back of the store. You go to the end of the line and do your best to wait patiently, but people’s anger and rudeness begins to ruffle you and you find yourself exhausted and thoroughly annoyed. Sound familiar? If so, you’re living in the thick of the commercialized season.
Though you might think this is unique to today, the truth is that it may not have been much different that first Christmas in Bethlehem. With the census in full swing, thousands of visitors descended upon the city and many of them were rushing around looking for a place to stay. Mary and Joseph probably weren’t the only ones who heard the phrase “no room” on that night. In fact, whether then or today, those words seem to sum up the condition of many people’s hearts as it pertains to noticing the quiet miracles happening among them. Millions miss the profound and life-transforming truth of the season because they are so caught up in the holiday hustle and bustle.
Friend, be still today. Quiet your heart and mind and refuse to fall into the trap of a Christmas that focuses on anything other than the living Lord. Surrender your to-do list, take a deep breath, and let Him fill your spirit with the wonders of His love.
Jesus, I surrender the last-minute holiday hustle to you and I pray that you would still my heart and mind.
How can you quiet your heart before Him today?