It was a miracle
There were just too many people; the little village was overwhelmed. Joseph’s family house was filled to overflowing and Mary needed privacy. So, she and Joseph stayed downstairs in the stable/cave. Everything was strange and new to her. Was this the way she was supposed to feel? Was it supposed to hurt this much? Was it supposed to take this long?
Alone, but not forgotten, she gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, a helpless incarnation of the Creator himself. So it began.
Jesus spent his first night wrapped in human skin sleeping in a hay-filled, bug infested, feed trough probably cut out of rock. While the God of creation was getting used to human limitations like breathing and crying, Bethlehem slept. The God who created time placed his future in the unproven and inexperienced hands of a teenage girl. The plan was risky.
The Savior of the world, the Messiah, the Christ, the Prince of Peace, the Son of God, was sleeping in an ordinary stable on the edge of tiny little village, in a troublesome providence of the Roman Empire. Nobody knew that this birth would change everything, everywhere.
Finally heaven could not keep quiet. The nameless, smelly,socially disconnected, beduin shepherds heard the news. They were stunned by the dazzling brightness filling the sky around them. The news was incredible, “the Messiah has come.” They had to go; they had to see for themselves.
On that night centuries ago, God opened the windows of heaven, and for a brief moment ordinary shepherds could glimpse the glory of heaven itself. Have you ever wondered why it was that shepherds were given this gift? Why not the religious leaders, the Sanhedrin, the politicians, the prominent people, the powerful people?
While the olive trees listened, hearts grew harder. Perhaps they were too busy looking down on others to look up to God? Or, maybe they couldn’t see God’s world because their eyes were too focused on their world.
Jesus traded the joys of heaven and the power of the Creator to become the created. He gave up everything for the willing arms of a novice mother, from an ordinary town, in a forgotten corner of the world. Yes, the plan was filled with risk.
Just a few miles way from Bethlehem was the city of Jerusalem, the city filled with leaders who could not except a man calling himself God. They were more than threatened, they were enraged. Living in the shadow of the Temple, they failed to see the “Holy of Holies” walking their streets and rocking their world.
The rocks knew and the trees knew, but the religious leaders missed the message.