Gina Caswell Kelly
I was thinking about who my favorite character of the Christmas story might be. Of course Jesus. That goes without saying. But who would be next?
I think Mary would be, because she was so sweet and willing. Mary was likely around 16 years old when the angel appeared to her and told her she would give birth to God’s Son. Can you imagine? I know the answer. No, we cannot imagine what that must have been like for Mary. But, she listened and thought and responded, “Let it be in me as you have said.” She didn’t understand how any of it was going to happen or what her life would be like, but she said, “If this is God’s will for me, then okay. I will do it.” She demonstrated such a willingness to serve God in whatever way He asked. Surely she is the favorite!
But, then there is Joseph. He was so excited to marry Mary. He had big plans. Probably had been thinking about her and daydreaming about the honeymoon, even. But, then he was asked to believe the unbelievable and asked to raise this child as his own. How could this be! But, he listened and he thought about it and he agreed to believe and to trust. What an amazing thing! To absolutely step out in faith and believe the unbelievable. Surely, Joseph is the favorite.
But, then there is the innkeeper. He really doesn’t get much press, but he is the one who provided them a warm place to welcome this new baby. Surely this baby deserved a better place than a stable! But, because the innkeeper felt such compassion for this young couple, Jesus’ birth was in a stable, reminding us that God doesn’t require fine things and a luxurious life to serve Him. Yeah. I think the innkeeper wins.
But then there are the shepherds. How about those guys! Just minding their own business out in the hills watching the sheep and suddenly their lives change! The sky lights up and the angels come down. Oh my goodness! They had to think the cider they were drinking had turned hard! But no, it was the angel of the Lord coming to bring them such wonderful news. And they went where they were told to go and saw the baby. And they worshipped Him. The very first people to hear about the birth of the Savior were just common everyday farmers. Certainly these guys hold a special place in my heart. They have to be my favorite.
But there was another person. That person wasn’t present that night, but the Christmas story was played out just for them. And that person is my favorite. That person is me! That person is you! That person is each one of us that God loved so very much that He gave His only Son to live and to die just for us. We were the reason for the season! It was us! We are so important to God that this all happened just because of us. Surely we are the favorites.
As we head into Christmas and all that it brings, let us never forget the love God has for each one of us. He loved us so much, that He brought Mary, Joseph, the Innkeeper, the Shepherds and precious baby Jesus all together on that night. He did it with so much love in His heart. And that precious baby Jesus and all that He did for us truly does make a difference!
Have a wonderful Christmas and remember the Savior!