But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
Thought for the Day: Through Jesus Christ, we are alive
Sitting for a few minutes after several days of Christmas celebrations and then a couple of days of family visiting in our home, has mixed thoughts. In one way, the festivities and preparations for the Christmas Cantata, Christmas Services, Christmas morning with our children, and Family Christmas planning kept me excited and giddy as we moved through the time. In another way, the time brought a tiredness as I felt I never sat down and never rested as well or as long as I would have liked. Last evening, on our one more excursion for our boys to use gift cards they had received and to do a couple of other things, I found I didn’t feel well. I shared with my husband that I wanted to stay in the car and let them share time in the stores. As I sat, I worked on a crochet project I had started and relaxed for that time. When we arrived home, I found that all I wanted to do was to crawl into bed. Thanks to my loving husband, I was able to do that so I crawled into bed and continued working on my crocheted project until my eyes became heavy. I did not set an alarm, for the first time in several months, and I allowed my body to get the rest it needed. Today, I feel better and ready for my day.
As I think about this experience this morning and how a good night sleep helped me feel more energetic, I think about someone else. I think about Mary and Joseph. When Mary gave birth to Baby Jesus, they had just traveled many miles with her riding on a donkey. She must have been so tired and she must have wanted so badly to have a place to lay her head. Joseph, who walked the distance must have been exhausted. Not only was he tired from the travel, he also had the extra concern for Mary as he knew she was close to giving birth. They walked up to that inn door and knocked hoping for a room. But what they received was a stable. Then she gave birth to Baby Jesus in that stable having to lay him in a manger because there was no other place to lay him. Oh, how they must have been so tired. But then, the angel appeared to some shepherds who came into that stable to kneel beside their baby and to worship Him. Can you imagine the feeling Mary and Joseph must have had in that moment? The tired feelings subsided making way for excitement and celebration. She had just given birth to Baby Jesus, the One who was born to save the world. Her body was still tired, but her Spirit was alive and awake, and only wanted to celebrate. As I look at myself and think about how my tired body caused me to want to rest, I think about Baby Jesus and that He is the reason for Christmas. My spirit is alive and awake today, just as Mary was in her tiredness so many years ago, because Baby Jesus was born and He lives in my heart every day.
Prayer: God, thank You for this time of year that You give us to celebrate the Birth of Your Son, Jesus Christ. You sent Him to be born to Mary when she was tired and worn as some of us find ourselves today. But through that birth, that most special birth, You gave Mary and us the One thing that can make us feel alive! Help us feel alive in Christ today – and every day. Amen.
Prayer Focus: Those needing to feel alive.