I wonder if Mary became a little agitated as Jesus’ birth drew near.
Discomfort, pain, a barn for a hospital….I wonder if she looked at Joseph and thought, “Seriously, is this the best you can do for the mother of God’s Son?”
I wonder if Joseph ever felt inadequate.
He had been visited by an angel and told of the amazing honor bestowed upon his bride-to-be; and he, a simple carpenter, wasn’t even able to give her a warm bed to sleep in.
I wonder if the shepherds second-guessed their appearance, their smell, their vocation as they ran to meet the “King of Kings” whose arrival had been announced to them by angels?
I wonder if the wise men felt stressed as they chose their gifts to present to Jesus?
A gift card wouldn’t have seemed appropriate for such a special young boy.
Truly, everywhere you turn in the Christmas story, it’s easy to see how people could have been feeling a little less than worthy of their place in the Nativity story.
Today, I feel a little unworthy.
Family dynamics aren’t always perfect over a holiday break.
I sense the last-minute details of the holiday bearing down on my spirit, and I know that in the scheme of life they are not that important…………
I want to have the right gifts, good food, a clean house, laundry done………..
I want to feel like Christmas is perfect for everyone around me.
AND THEN I STEP BACK AND REMEMBER THE FIRST CHRISTMAS, AND I AM HUMBLED.
Here I am trying to create perfection when the reason for this whole season began in the midst of imperfect people in an imperfect place.
PERFECTION was born in the midst of imperfection.
That’s the beauty of the holiday, isn’t it?
I think that’s why I love to look at Nativity scenes.
No fancy house, no elaborate decorating, no gigantic feast.
Just a barn, hay, smelly animals, men dressed in burlap, a baby wrapped in pieces of cloth…….
I breathe deeply now and remember that I am trying too hard.
Christmas is a cry for simple, humble moments of love and joy and sharing.
Forgive me, Lord, for trying to make it any more than this.
Bring me to my knees every time I forget that the only Perfection I’ll ever find in this life began in a manger.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.