Where is the stable?
We each know the Christmas Story, the birth of Jesus Christ. We hear about Mary, the mother of Jesus, and about Joseph. We hear about the shepherds watching and waiting for the Christ child to be born. We hear about the wise men on the road still searching for the Holy One.
Each character in this story is waiting, watching and searching for this wonderful gift that is to be born.
Let us open our hearts and be like Mary, willing to say yes. When the angel Gabriel asked her to be the mother of Christ, she trusted the unknown and she didn’t falter.
Or perhaps be like Joseph. He was open to the call of God, willing to change plans for what was being asked of him because he trusted the call.
As we ponder this miracle of Christmas, the reality was the stable was probably not clean. At best it smelled of livestock. The setting was simple, not glamorous as Christmas cards may show. It was real and it was authentic. Christ was born as a human being. He had real hurts. He struggled emotionally at times. He experienced joy. He taught others to believe through his modeling of hard work.
This baby relied on Mary to hold him and comfort him. This baby relied on Joseph to protect him. This baby relied on the shepherds to wait for his birth. And this baby relied on his disciples to help him spread the word with their many different gifts.
This baby relies on us to open our stable, our hearts, and allow the Holy One in. To allow the Holy One in so we can believe and continue his teachings.
This baby knew he was facing a broken world, but this baby never became hopeless. This baby showed us the way: that life isn’t always glamorous, but it is beautiful. This baby was poor and simple and knew he would face a world of great need.
This Christmas open your stable, your heart, and welcome the Holy One. Embrace this sacred season with hopefulness, with love. Find a way to work around conflict within your family and the world. Never forget that you are carrying the Christ within yourself. Your heart is the stable of life.