Monday, December 22nd

In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.”  Luke 2:1-7

 

Today’s will be the first post to my new “blogsite” and it will be the final devotion I write for 2008.  The daily devotions will resume again on Monday, January 5th.

 

Between now and then we will all gather to remember this old story that never gets old.  The first Christmas holiday travelers.  The pregnant girl and her quiet husband.  The town which had no room for them.  The humble manger into which the baby was laid.  The little baby Jesus.

 

Such a simple and marvelously profound story.  There is a sermon tucked away in every line.  There is history stretching in it back to the creation of the world.  Every one of us hears these words and across our mind’s eye dances the Christmas pageants of our past.  And we are still surprised to see that there was no room for this “first family.”  Jesus was born on the edge, on the fringes.

 

There’s an old line I love because it fits me so well – “You can take the kid out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the kid.”  And another – “There’s only one place you can truly be from.”  Both lines fit Jesus.

 

Christmas reminds us of the simple humanity of Jesus.  Born to be “God with us”, Jesus came into our world as we did.  And yet there was another part of him, just as there is a part of us, that never truly quite “fits” – even in our hometowns.  There is a part of us, deeply rooted in the here-and-now, that also senses that there has to be something more, something beyond, something other.  And Jesus opens the door to that for us.

 

Born to be among us, he would live to be rejected.  Rejected by us, he would rise to bring us home.  Reigning over us, he lights a path for our lives that leads us to discovering a new power and purpose for our lives.  To surrender, to serve, to praise, to follow.

 

May God richly and deeply bless you as you come together again this week, and again this season, around that simple story that alones helps our stories make sense.

 

Let us pray:  Draw near to us, dear Lord, as we remember your birth.  As we celebrate your coming into our world, may you come as well into our lives.  See us through the darkness of our times by being our Light and our Hope.  In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen.

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One Response to “Monday, December 22nd”

  1. Linda Stoetzer Says:

    Please keep me on your list to receive daily devotions. I could not access another way to make this request.
    Thank you and may God’s first blessing of Christmas be with you through the New Year.

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