Thursday, December 22, 2011
Looking Back to the First Christmas!
Many families are struggling today just to make ends meet and put food on the table. How can they have a Merry Christmas under such circumstances? Well, I have some thoughts on that….
I’ve been thinking a lot about the true meaning of Christmas, specifically what that first Christmas must have been like for Mary and Joseph. Here they were in a strange city, there was no room available for them, not a bed or a warm meal. No family to embrace them and take them under their wing. They were out in the cold. Mary was “great with child” and had been on a donkey for miles and miles.
Years before chronic illness entered my life, I remember my ride to the hospital in a nice warm car in mid-February, far along in labor with my last son. I had a few choice words every time my husband hit a bump or took a turn to fast mid-contraction. Having a horse of my own now, I can’t begin to imagine what it must have been like for Mary to be riding a donkey during labor, let alone pregnant with her first child. I was terrified when I began labor with my first child! The fear of the unknown was terrifying to me. Unlike Mary, I had tons of family around to support me and a great doctor with caring nurses. Also, I had a comfy hospital bed … and best of all anesthesiology.
So why do you think God our Father chose this series of events for His one and only begotten Son to be born into the world? He is the King of Kings, the Prince of Peace! One would assume that Mary should have the best attendants or midwives to assist her. Then a royal celebration, fireworks and parades once Jesus was born. Wouldn’t that be more befitting of the Savior of the World?
As I look back through the Gospels and read through the Christmas Story, I see that God’s wisdom is always perfect. I’ve heard preachers say that there may not have even been a stable … the Bible mentions that Mary placed Jesus in a manger. It’s very possible that Mary gave birth in a field with the cattle and sheep. God brought His Son to the world in the must lowly and humble way. Swaddling clothes instead of the finest layette. He had a bed of hay instead of a cradle full of soft blankets. God gave us a beautiful example to show us that all the material things of this world are not important. They don’t define us, or make us a better person. If we think that they do, perhaps we should dig deeper into His Holy Word and search our hearts.
There may not have been fireworks, but there was a chorus of angels and God placed a brilliant star in the sky! Perhaps not a parade, but a line of shepherds and wise men came to see the newborn King!
In the end, God provided for Mary and Joseph. They had what they NEEDED and He protected them and watched over them. How many times do we say “I need this…” but if we really looked hard, do we really need the things we think we can’t live without?
Do we really need a tree to celebrate Christmas, or the presents underneath it to rejoice in the birth of Christ? For that matter, do we need a big fancy meal to celebrate? No, not really. Those things are fine to have, there certainly isn’t anything wrong with them. They can be wonderful reminders to us of the TRUE GIFT of Christmas. For without Christ, there wouldn’t be Christmas in the first place!
Let’s jump ahead a moment to Luke chapter 10: Jesus says to Mary and His disciples: “but few things are needed - or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” He was speaking of her hunger for the Word of God, that which fed her faith. That is the one thing we all will ever truly need.
So as you celebrate Christmas this year with your families, remember to take the time to celebrate the birth of our Savior! Don’t let the politically correct movement steal your joy of celebrating Jesus birthday! It’s Merry CHRISTmas, not Happy Holidays and it’s a CHRISTmas Tree, not a holiday tree. Christmas will always be the time we celebrate the birth of our Savior. I look forward to the day when He will come again and I can share eternity with Him in heaven!
I’ll be spending time with the family so this will probably be my last post until January! I hope that you will all have a wonderful time with your families and make memories to cherish! Remember to pace yourself and take time to rest so you don't overdo and flare your disease. I pray that you all have a good health days to celebrate!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all!
Blessings and Peace,
© Robynn “Bobbie” Dinse / Follow Your Dreams-Tales From Beside The Wheel
Please note that this short story is copyrighted and should not be reprinted in any form without permission from the author. Feel free to link to "Follow your Dreams-Tales From Beside The Wheel" Thank you!