Making room in the inn

The account of Christ Jesus' birth found in the second chapter of the Gospel of Luke is beloved by all Christians. And perhaps few details of the story have evoked as much awe and wonder over the centuries as the simple fact that Mary gave birth to the Son of God in a stable "because there was no room for them in the inn." Luke 2:7.

Hearing this part of the Christmas tradition, many of us may think, "How callous that the only space made available for this woman 'great with child' was a stable! And not just any child but the heavenly royal Prince of Peace!" We may feel quite sure that had we been in charge of the inn, we would readily have offered the best we had to these holy pilgrims and given them a joyous welcome.

Would we have? Perhaps. But we need not regard the question as mere speculation! For we have occasion each day to demonstrate our practical response to it. How so? Consider that the "inn" might represent individual consciousness, to which the message of the Christ presents itself, moment by moment. Do we receive that message eagerly? Do we find ample space for it in our thought? Or is it crowded out by the cares of everyday life, by materialism, by sensuality? Is the Christ message welcomed into the living room—does it become our center of attention?

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The Christian touch
December 17, 1984

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