In dirty streets filled with the hustle and bustle of chattering families...something big was about to happen.
Unnoticed by the crowds. He was just another harried husband with his wife.
She looked to be so very young... and was. Almost too young for such a monumental task.
There was pushing and shoving along the streets. Ill mannered throngs tired from long journeys, made no excuse for being rude. Their words stung in the hearts of an already weary couple that had just arrived.
And search as they might, there were no rooms left to be had. And Inn keepers were curt and had no patience after answering far too many knocks on their doors for desperate peoples displaced in the moment.
He, at his last desperate straw, had reached the end of the town, and the end of any hope for his young wife’s relief. This HAD to be the place...the one that would take them in! It just had to. But the keeper of many rooms had only turned the young husband away...once again.
But then this man, standing in the doorway of his comfortable home, his big belly filled with abundance and his coffers full from the newly acquired windfall that the census brought to town, caught a fleeting glimpse of a young woman. She was sitting on a donkey and great with child...obviously in discomfort from a very long journey just made.
He could tell she was in need, and his heart was
moved with a temporary and unusual compassion.
He called out to the young husband making his way back to her and said, “I have a place for you...”
The relief washed over Joseph’s whole being...as this innkeeper took his lantern to lead them to the stable.
It was full of the animals left in stalls by the many who were staying in his inn, and his own family’s livestock. Quite a site to be sure.
He bid the young couple “Goodnight”...and went back into his comfortable home. Perhaps he offered assistance, but then maybe he was just grumpy and too tired to be bothered any further than allowing them a space with the creatures in his barn. Who could know?
As the night progressed, Joseph had made as soft a place for his young wife Mary to lay as he possibly could under such meager circumstances. Her pain grew intense and Joseph grew anxious.
Finally, their precious child was born. With ten tiny fingers and ten little toes, and the face of an angel.
Beyond the din and the clamoring crowds and the murmuring, muffling of creatures that surrounded them. Beyond all human comprehension and reason...a tiny child, God himself, was born the most vulnerable of all of creation, to take his royal place...in a manger filled with straw.
This one tiny living being
who would change the world forever.
Who would take upon himself, the sins of the world.
He would live life and then die in brutal sacrifice, to save us with a love greater than our understanding.
And in the hustle and bustle of this world of ours today, teeming with harried, weary journeymen from every walk of life...
In the dirtied streets and along the highways and byways, while we search desperately the world over, for just a place to lay our heads...
We can, this one day of the year at least, remember that a King came to reside among us. That He laid his life down willingly, because He loves us. That when we are wandering aimlessly, helpless and often lost and looking, constantly looking, for our own stable...our own stability, and every one else in life has turned us away, it is He that says... “I have a place for you”...
And now the question remains...
Do you have a place for Him? A vacancy in your heart where He may reside today?