I remember when I was about to have a baby for the first time. I washed all of her clothing, set up her nursery, made sure that I had plenty of diapers, bottles and preregistered at the hospital. On December the 20th, the event happened! Oh how excited we were for our baby girl. The hospital was ready and clean...
How different my experience was than from the birth of Jesus. Mary was young, married to Joseph although the consummation hadn't happened yet. I am sure she was scared and unsure of what the future would hold. She was given a few directions from the angel that visited. Then the census was taking place and she had to ride on a donkey all of the way to Bethlehem! Not in a luxury car...I am sure that the ride alone was enough to start the onset of labor. Then there was the news of not a vacancy in town. That would be the straw that would break this mama's back! I would have cried!!! Joseph found at least a barn or stable with some clean straw. I cannot even imagine how Joseph felt. He must have felt so awful not being able to provide a nice place for his wife that was having the baby. A stinky old stable. Far from the clean or sterile hospital I had with the cool gift baskets. No flowers to be delivered from the florists.
Announcements made? I had mine ready to send out to everyone! My husband called the local radio station to tell them how excited he was! He had just had the most beautiful baby girl born! They laughed and congratulated him on the air. The announcement for Mary's baby was somewhat different than mine. It had been announced by Solomon hundreds of years before and then there were the angel visitations. Yeah, that's normal :) Then finally the angels that appeared singing to the shepherds. The shepherds were the lower classed people, not exactly the socialite page in the paper.
Visitors? Oh, there were visitors. The shepherds showed up, great more animals... however they came to worship this child. I wonder how that made Mary and Joseph feel? I am sure there were a million things going through their heads that day. This precious little boy in her arms...the son of God. The Savior of the world. The Hope for all generations. I am not for sure if Mary even had an inkling of what was to behold for their little family's future but it would break her heart. He came to save the world in exchange for His life and a mother's heart.
Take a moment to think about the birth of Christ this season. It wasn't just a cute center piece for your fireplace mantle. It was a life changing event for Mary and Joseph and the whole world, including you and I.
Have a Very Merry Christmas,