Merry Christmas. May God give you amazing hope and peace in this coming year. – The Webster Family
Words From Webster: Into a world of chaos, He came
By Daniel Webster, dWeb.News Publisher
For many in our neck of the woods, the sights, sounds and smells of Christmas are an all-too-real, everyday reality.
Our society, however, has whitewashed the Christmas story to make it palatable to those individuals who are weak-kneed and would rather deal with reality according to Hallmark.
• • •
The city was filled with frantic people vying for a bed to spend the night. The inns were all packed, causing angst to reach a feverish pitch. Citizens throughout the area were consumed with contempt for the government, which was forcing them to travel great distances to fulfill their tax duties.
In many ways, it was a world filled with much that controls our lives today. Big government was overpowering its citizens. Conquering and gaining more power was the ruling mentality of the day. He arrived at a time when the nation was filled with angst. Every 14 years the government required a census so tax revenue could be planned. It was an empire that fed off the masses.
It was April 15th multiplied ten-fold.
Into the city, a woman rode on a donkey. It’s not exactly the most comfortable trip to make in any condition, much less being nine months pregnant and ready to give birth at any moment.
It had been an exhausting trip, approximately 120 miles. This may sound bearable at 65 miles per hour, but consider this trip over the course of 30 hours or more – bouncing on a donkey.
Upon arriving in the troubled city, the couple was likely overwhelmed with disappointment when they discovered that the entire city was booked to the hilt. After the long journey there was not a bed to be found.
The husband did, however, find a stable where they could stay for the night. It wasn’t exactly the ideal accommodations he was wanting for his expectant bride, but it would have to do.
Walking in, the mother’s senses were bombarded with the stench of animal urine and feces. Not having a choice, she covered her nose, prayed that she would not vomit and began to make a bed in the straw for herself and her husband-to-be. This was her bed for the night.
She collapsed in exhaustion. A mother in her condition probably would have broken down and bawled, wondering why she was being forced to endure such desperate circumstances – but crying wouldn’t have changed her abode for the night and the open tear ducts would have stung with the smell.
As the pangs of labor began to overtake her, she had to resign herself to the fact that her first born would be brought into the world in a literal pig sty and that His first sights and smells would be that of a rotting world.
One would think, this is no place for a king to be born. Quite the contrary. It was into this chaos and for our debased world that the glory and majesty of the God Almighty came in a carnate form.
He came to bring peace. He came to offer hope. He met us in the mess of our lives rather than waiting for us to clean ourselves up for His arrival.
To have arrived in any other manner would have meant that He had no comprehension of how the daily tribulations of our lives can sometimes cause us to be found in the gutter of our existence.
Not much has changed in 2,000 years. Sure, technology has skyrocketed and science has discovered amazing new heights.
But the basic premise of our lives has not changed.
We are still a world filled with chaos and fear. We still find ourselves, either figuratively or literally, in the mire of the gutter.
Yet through our quagmire, God Almighty still reaches down in love and offers a peace and hope that cannot be duplicated in any other form.
Amidst the chaos, He came. In a setting filled with the refuse of reality, He arrived.
The circumstances surrounding His birth gave Him a connection with everyone of us. For, no matter where we are, no matter what our lot in life, no matter what the anxiety of the moment is, He understands and brings peace. He is the one through whom we can make a direct connection with our Creator.
Following His birth, several individuals were chosen to come witness this history altering event. Royalty was not invited. Land barons were not asked to come. Celebrities were not chosen.
Those invited were not concerned about getting manure on their designer label sandals. They were ones who weren’t distracted by the stench and surroundings, thereby missing the magnitude of the Son of God’s birth.
Angels heralded the simplest of folks. Sheepherders were the ones given the awesome invitation to come and be the Messiah’s first guests.
He knew that His coming would not take the chaos out of this world, rather, His birth would bring peace to souls living amidst the world’s chaos.
His message is still the same today as it was two millennia ago.
This baby, born in the humblest circumstances, has the power to change your life and bring you peace and hope. His peace is not affected by the chaos surrounding your life.
His peace is sustaining.
How do I know He has the power to change a life, forgive and love no matter what? I’ve experienced it. I’m living proof.
And how can you experience the power of Christmas?
You say, “God forgive me of my sins. I believe that you love me and you were born into this world to save me. I believe that you died on the cross to forgive me of my sins and I accept your forgiveness, which gives me the right to stand before you as a clean, blameless person. Please come into my heart. I accept you as my Lord and Savior.”
No matter who you are, what you’ve done, or what your status in life – no matter what color, race, background, age or sexual orientation, God loves you.
And this Christmas can be the celebration of your birth as well.
May the power of God’s peace envelop you this Christmas season and may your year be filled with His hope and joy.
• • •
The Bible Christmas Story from Luke 2:1-20
About that time Caesar Augustus ordered a census to be taken throughout the Empire. This was the first census when Quirinius was governor of Syria.
Everyone had to travel to his own ancestral hometown to be accounted for. So Joseph went from the Galilean town of Nazareth up to Bethlehem in Judah, David’s town, for the census. As a descendant of David, he had to go there. He went with Mary, his fiancée, who was pregnant.
While they were there, the time came for her to give birth. She gave birth to a son, her firstborn. She wrapped him in a blanket and laid him in a manger, because there was no room in the hostel.
There were sheepherders camping in the neighborhood. They had set night watches over their sheep.
Suddenly, God’s angel stood among them and God’s glory blazed around them.
They were terrified.
The angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I’m here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide: A Savior has just been born in David’s town, a Savior who is Messiah and Master. This is what you’re to look for: a baby wrapped in a blanket and lying in a manger.”
At once the angel was joined by a huge angelic choir singing God’s praises: Glory to God in the heavenly heights, Peace to all men and women on earth who please him.
As the angel choir withdrew into heaven, the sheepherders talked it over.
“Let’s get over to Bethlehem as fast as we can and see for ourselves what God has revealed to us.”
They left, running, and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger.
Seeing was believing.
They told everyone they met what the angels had said about this child. All who heard the sheepherders were impressed.
Mary kept all these things to herself, holding them dear, deep within herself.
The sheepherders returned and let loose, glorifying and praising God for everything they had heard and seen. It turned out exactly the way they’d been told!
Luke 2:1-20 MSG
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