Humble and Imperfect

24 Dec

My family and I were discussing the other night about our upcoming Christmas trip to a chalet in a remote area. The conversation mostly consisted of problems with the trip. For about 30 minutes we were talking about how cold it will be without a well insulated heated house, how boring it will be without the luxuries of the city life at your disposal and how useless the whole trip really is. Looking back on how that whole evening transpired, I cannot believe that I, being an optimist, actually took part in that negative discussion. Is Christmas really about having everything work out to perfection?

Let me walk you through the whole story about Christmas. Around 2010 years ago, a very young woman, probably in her early 20s, named Mary got pregnant. She had no idea how this could happen, for she was a virgin, but an angel of the Lord spoke to her and told her that she would give birth to the saviour of the world, Emmanuel. Could you imagine how the people who knew she was a virgin reacted to Mary’s pregnancy? Mary and Joseph must have been scrutinized and insulted all throughout those nine months leading up to the birth up Jesus. When it was time to give birth, Mary and Joseph were in Bethlehem. They tried to rent a room for the night of the birth, but the inn was full. There was absolutely nowhere for baby Jesus, God’s own son, to be born. Joseph must have been so stressed to find somewhere for Mary to give birth. Finally they find a manger.

Do you know what a manger is? It is a piece of carved stone or wood used to hold food for animals. Doesn’t sound very luxurious, does it?

Mary had a very miserable pregnancy. She was rejected by those who knew she was a virgin and she had to give birth to her firstborn in something used to feed animals. I am convinced that if God wanted Jesus to come to earth and be born in a luxurious fashion, He would have made it so, but He didn’t.

If Joseph and Mary were rejected by many and had to resort to giving birth to the Saviour in a sub-par stable in the little town of Bethlehem, why should we feel as if everything must be perfect for this special time of year? Does the turkey or roast have to be perfectly cooked? Does it matter if we have to sacrifice certain things to spend some quality time with family? Shouldn’t we make every attempt to have a humble heart during this time of year, just like Mary and Joseph? If Jesus, whom every Christian should try to resemble, was rejected by the people in the town and the innkeeper and had to be born in a manger, should we not celebrate his birth in a humble fashion?

So this Christmas season, don’t strive for perfection, don’t be superficial, but cherish the fact that an omnipotent God came to puny earth in the form of a man, the man Christ Jesus, in order to die on the tree. Take joy in having a humble and imperfect Christmas. I know I will!


One Response to “Humble and Imperfect”

  1. joyinthevalley December 24, 2009 at 2:26 pm #

    Amen to that! You will have an imperfect Christmas, count on it-there are 3 young kids in the mix! Looking forward to spending this imperfect Christmas with you. Emmanuel, God with us!

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