This morning, I ran across some old Christmas postcards I’d had made a few years back with this scripture on them: “And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2:7
It got me to thinking about how Mary must have felt as a first time new mom…in a barn of animals…in the cold…
Earlier this year, I gave birth to my first son in a nice, clean, temperature controlled hospital and it was still a hard experience for me. I studied up on labor and delivery and bought this great helpful set of DVD’s so I would be ready to have this baby. Just think of how much educational material exists today and how readily available it is.
So, here we have Mary, getting ready to give birth not only to her first son, but to the savior of the entire world. No pressure there! They traveled a long way (I should look up and see how many miles it was), probably in the cold only to discover they couldn’t even stay in the hotels there. I bet the hotels were even bare bones compare to what we have today.
Can you imagine giving birth in a cold barn with just your husband there to deliver the baby? I just rolled my eyes, because as much as I love my husband, we would have had a disaster if it would have been the two of us in a barn.
Every mom wants the best for their baby. When my son was born, the doctors and nurses whisked him up to make sure he was healthy and cleaned him up a bit. Later that night, he got his first bath. Poor Mary could just wrap him up in whatever was available and pray that he didn’t catch a cold.
Maybe she didn’t worry to much, because she knew he was holy and would be fine. But, the mom in me still says she would be concerned about his well being. Really, if you think about it, all of us moms are in a similar boat as Mary. My son is not my own – he’s just lended to me to raise. He belongs fully to God, but I just get to enjoy him for a time, and I’m still worried about him on a daily basis. There’s a selfish part of me that is very thankful that I didn’t have to give birth to the One that would end up dying a horrible death on a cross to save humanity.
So, this Christmas season, take a minute to thank God for sending that baby boy down from heaven for us. Also, take a minute to thank Mary and Joseph for being so strong and brave. Most of all, thank Jesus for choosing to make the journey.