Make Room for Jesus
"She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them." (Luke 2:7 NLT)
One year when our children were young, my wife decided that I would get to choose where the family went on vacation. I decided I wanted to do a totally spontaneous vacation with no planning whatsoever. As a pastor and leader, every day of my life is planned out. Planning a vacation doesn't sound like fun!
A totally spontaneous vacation when you're married with kids is not a good idea. Without making any plans on the first five nights of that vacation in five different cities, we slept in our car during four of those nights because we couldn't find a motel with vacancy. My kids were not happy campers. On the fifth night, we decided to plan ahead.
That vacation helped me understand what the Bible means when we're told during the story of the first Christmas that there was "no lodging available" for Mary and Joseph.
The coming of the eternal God and promised Messiah had been anticipated for thousands of years. Prophecies had foretold the truth that the Savior of the world would be coming. His birth would be so important that it would split history into B.C. and A.D. Your birthday is dated in relationship to the birthday of Jesus.
Yet when the Son of God came into the world, there was no room for him. The innkeeper missed a prime opportunity. If Jesus had been born in one of his rooms, the innkeeper could have built one of those big Las Vegas signs that points down and reads, "Son of God Born Here!" He could have charged a fortune for rooms! Instead he missed the biggest blessing of his life because he didn't have room for Jesus.
We can't be too harsh on the innkeeper for not having room for Jesus. We do it all the time.
We all resist giving him the significance in our lives that he deserves. We fill up our schedule with events that pale in significance compared to Jesus. We spend our money on the newest gadget and have nothing to give to God's work around the world. We spend all our time advancing our careers and yet say we have no time to help others in our church and community.
As you prepare to celebrate Christmas this year, ask yourself this question: Have you left room in your inn for Jesus?
Talk It Over
- What are some ways we fill our "inns" and leave little room for Jesus during Christmas - and throughout the year?
- How can you create margin in your Christmas schedule to focus on the importance of Jesus?
- What are some things in your life you need to say "no" to so you can say "yes" to a growing, vibrant relationship with Jesus?