December 24, 2014
Advent — our season of waiting — is done. The good news from Bethlehem this day is announced once again to the world.
The story of the Nativity is framed in our memory — timeless yet timely — so strikingly familiar to the headlines we read today, it could make the front page.
It is the story of a young woman, Mary, with child before her marriage. Near the time for her to deliver, government authorities force her and her husband, Joseph, across the countryside to register for a census. When they arrive, there is no place to stay. The family is homeless and Mary has no place to give birth to her son except for a stable where she places her newborn son in a manger filled with straw as his first cradle.
The powerful message the Christmas story sends is that God is telling us this world matters, that we matter, and he loves us — so much so that he became flesh among us.
The manger is our cradle too — our cradle of faith that focuses our hearts and minds on the wonders that God has given to us in his only Son, born this day to save the world from its sinfulness.
As we gather today with family to celebrate the birth of Christ, may we stand before the crèche in our homes and pray that our hearts become a cradle for the Christ child’s love that we need to share with everyone this day and every day.
Is there any more special Christmas gift for us than to let the manger be our cradle of faith?
Merry Christmas everyone!