It’s early Christmas morning and I’m the first one up.
I’m always the first one up. I light the candles, get a fire going, and crank the AC down because we live in Houston. Then its coffee and carols. And then it’s my daughter, coming out in her pajamas to sit with me by the fireplace. She’s 27 and married, but she still likes to begin Christmas with her dad, as she’s done for many years. The rest of the family will be out soon and the presents, stockings, and wrapping will all be front and center.
For Mary and Joseph?
Christmas morning was different for them. They made it to Bethlehem, an exhausting trip, especially for Mary. As they approached the village, they surely were looking forward to a warm room and a comfortable bed. But it wasn’t to be, for the inn was full.
Did the exchange go something like this:
Inn Keeper: “I’m sorry folks, but we’re booked solid.”
Joseph: “You don’t understand, we’ve traveled for days and my wife is expecting. You must have something?”
Inn Keeper: “Well, it isn’t much, but you’re welcome to stay out back with the sheep, donkeys, and camels.”
Joseph: (looking at his exhausted and very pregnant wife) said, “Okay, we’ll take it.”
It Was Time
Mary was in labor. Was it a difficult delivery? Did she have any help or was only Joseph by her side? She probably didn’t have her mom or any help at all.
But the Savior was born. I imagine Joseph cutting the cord and Mary swaddling him in strips of cloth. The infant king nestled in his mother’s arms. All of heaven was in joyous celebration; with the angels singing in glorious praise.
It was a silent night, a holy night, a night adorned by a brilliant star in the east. At long last, after thousands of years, God made good on his promise, he came to be with us.
It’s early morning. It’s just me, a perfectly lit tree, and my perfectly beautiful daughter. The fire is crackling, the coffee is fresh, and the carols are softly playing.
It was a very different experience for Mary and Joseph. But it all started with them. They brought the Savior into the world and his coming was good news of great joy. He came because we needed him. We still do.
It’s Christmas morning.