In the build up to Christmas we can get so busy. I know that the festive season can be crazy. Often, I am caught up running around frantically trying to tie up all the loose ends, and I end up losing my peace and joy. Many rush around in the shops and malls looking for the right gifts, rushing around to stock up on goodies for the holidays. It is so easy to get sucked into the busyness.
During this season, many fill their lives with so much stuff that they have no room to breathe. It feels like one needs another holiday to recover from the business of the festive season.
It is so easy to be overly consumed with “things to do” and “stuff” that we can miss out on what is truly important.
I want to remind you to make room in your heart for Jesus during this Christmas season,
If you don’t make room for Jesus, the busyness of life will drown him out. If you don’t set time aside for God, other things will flood your life and you will not have any room for Him.
The Town of Bethlehem
In the build up to the greatest day in history, when the Savior was about to be born, the town of Bethlehem was busy. People were rushing around. The town was filled to capacity. The people’s lives were so full of stuff and things to do, that they ended up missing the arrival of the Savior of the world.
Caesar Augustus had issued a decree that “a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.” (Luke 2:1). During this week “everyone had to go to their own town to register.” (Luke 2:3)
The major towns were full. Hotels and inns were booked out. The cities were a hive of activity. Many had to travel far to get to the city for the week of the census.
We are told that, “Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.” (Luke 2:4-5)
No room in the Inn
Mary was about to give birth to the Savior of the world. She needed to rest, but Bethlehem was so full that there was not even a room left at the Inn for them to stay. The hotels were fully booked. If this had happened in today’s world, There would not even have been a place available on Airbnb. Bethlehem was buzzing. It was like peak season holidays.
As I am sure you know, when a woman is pregnant it is difficult to know exactly when the baby is ready to arrive. While in Bethlehem, Mary’s labor pains began. She needed a place to rest and a place where her baby could be born. And, with everything full, she had no place to stay.
We are told, “While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son (Jesus). She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.” (Luke 2:6-7)
Picture this, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords was born and placed in a cow’s feeding trough – a lowly manger, possibly in a stable – because there were no rooms available. God sent his Son down from heaven to save the world and there was no room for him. The Messiah had come, but most missed him.
Jesus, the Messiah, was born and placed in a manger for there was no room for Him.
It got me thinking: Sometimes we can be so busy running our full lives, often filling it with meaningless activities, that we can end up missing God.
It is so easy to be so busy, to have so much to do, to be living such full lives, that we can miss the big events in our lives.
I need to encourage you this Christmas to make room in your heart for Jesus. Don’t miss God. He wants a relationship with you.
Don’t miss God
Most of the people in Bethlehem were just focused on their own busyness and festivities. They were not even aware that the Savior had come, that he had been born. They were right there, but missed this great moment.
Have you missed God?
But see this. Just out of town, “there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.” (Luke 2:8)
The shepherds were working, looking after their sheep. Suddenly, “An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.” (Luke 2:9)
I am sure that if I was in the field that night, I would have also been scared. These shepherds had an angelic encounter. The angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:10-12)
The angels told the shepherds,
- Don’t be afraid
- I bring you good news of great joy
- The Savior has been born
- The Messiah is here
The angel then told them, if you want to meet the Savior of the world, go into town. You will find him lying in a manger.
“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” (Luke 2:13-14)
God poured out his glory. The Savior had been born. Heaven had invaded earth. God was pouring out his favor and offering peace to all the peoples of the world.
We are told that “when the angels had left them”, the shepherds said, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about. So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.” (Luke 2:15-16)
While people in Bethlehem missed the Savior, the shepherds left their flocks and hurried off to Bethlehem. They did not want to miss the Savior of the world. They were prepared to rearrange their schedule and make room because they were desperate to meet Jesus.
We are told that, “when they had seen him”, they “told everyone what had happened.” (Luke 2:17)
They couldn’t keep it in. They had met the Savior. Their lives were forever changed, and they praised God.
Don’t miss it
This Christmas, make room for Jesus. Sometimes we can get so busy, and have so much to do, that we end up missing what is important. Don’t miss the Savior. Don’t miss Jesus. Don’t miss the reason for the season.
Make room in your heart for Jesus.