I’m thinking of Mary today.
How, just a few days before Christ’s birth, she must have been feeling stretched and sore, not only from being so heavy with child, but from her time of distant travels.
How I might have felt, in her place, after such a journey.
How, in my humanity and utter imperfectness, I would have felt when my husband could not find an inn with room for us.
No room? In any inn? Can they not see that I am in desperate need of a warm room, midwife assistance, and a soothing hot drink? My child is coming. How could you not make room for me? For my little one? Sir, what about you, would you give us your room, if even for one night?
Lord, help me to be content with what you’ve provided.
Who am I to think I would deserve such things, such luxuries, such compassion?
And yet sometimes we go about life that way… I deserve that nice car, or that big house, or steak for dinner. Or…. my children deserve more toys, an ivy league education, or the latest video game. After all, everyone else has it, right? Are they any better than I am? Worse yet, who are THEY to have it, and why shouldn’t I?
Yet Mary, about to give birth to the Savior of the world, did not even have a proper room to give birth to him in. Did that mean she wasn’t special, or she wasn’t loved, or maybe not anointed for His purpose? No!
We know this about Mary: “Hail, thou that art highly favored… blessed are thou among women” (Luke 1:28). Highly favored! Blessed among women! No, her circumstances were not ideal, but she was right in line with the divine will of God.
What we have – or do not have – it not a measure of our worth. And what others appear to have can be deceiving. We are in grave danger when we begin to compare ourselves to others and think we deserve more than what we have, more than what He has provided, more than what we can comfortably afford.
Sometimes our desires aren’t in line with the plan God has for us. And, even when it’s hard, even when we can’t see why, His plan promises to be better than ours. When we live life outside of His plan, believing we somehow deserve more, we lose our peace, sometimes we lose our families, some even lose their relationship with Him.
Born in a manger – a feed trough. Yes, this was the King of Kings and the Lord of all Lords.
In our pride, our ambition, our ignorance, we continue to think we somehow deserve more, or something better, that we have a right to “it,” whatever “it” may be.
Lord, help me to remember the truth today. You give us the greatest of gifts: abundant life, salvation, grace, Your Word, hope, real peace.
Teach me Your ways, Father, even when they look different than the world’s ways, even when it may be hard or unpopular, even when I don’t understand, even when it’s uncomfortable.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10
Go in grace today,