And while [Joseph and Mary were in Bethlehem]
, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.
— Luke 2:6-7 NLT
We all wait in anticipation for the birth of a child in our families. We are waiting for the time to come. No one can be sure when that time will be. The sages may debate about how the baby is being carried and speculate on the arrival date. Doctors and nurses will talk about subtle body signals, dilation, and effacement, but they can't be sure either. Young children awaiting a new sibling will drive everyone crazy by asking every day for months if this is the day. Imagine the excitement among the angels of heaven at this birth of Jesus! It wasn't just Joseph and Mary, but also the hosts of heaven, who awaited Jesus' birth. So at just the right time (Galatians 4:4), the "time came for her baby to be born." Like any good mother, Mary welcomed her child, and God began his gracious and sacrificial journey through humanity, swaddled at his birth like every other new baby, but with his bed made in a manger like no other. The question you and I face is whether we will give God a room in the most important place, a place in our hearts.
How do I comprehend your gracious and sacrificial love, dear Father? Coming in human flesh as a baby! Swaddled in strips of cloth like the babies of that day! Making your bed in a manger! Holy God, my Abba Father, please know that I want you to make your place in my heart. You are welcome here. Your presence is desired. Thank you for the grace of coming in Jesus. Thank you for your grace of also coming to live in me through your Spirit. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Galatians 4:4
- John 1:14-18
- 1 Peter 1:8-12
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.