The Abundant Life: Riches money can’t buy…
Those living the abundant life make room for Jesus—especially at this time of year.
One of my favorite Christmas cartoons is of two men looking at a humble Mary. She’s pregnant with the Christ child and riding on a donkey being led by Joseph. The caption reads, “Just another couple of homeless people. Try to ignore them.” In a way that sums up how many people view Christ at Christmastime. They go through the Christmas holidays trying to ignore Christ, the very reason for the season. Never realizing that without Christ, there is no Christmas.
The story of Jesus’s birth is not just a story. It really happened. In those days, a decree when out from Caesar that all should be taxed. So everyone went to be taxed to his own city. Joseph and a very pregnant Mary went to Bethlehem. While there Mary gave birth to Jesus “… and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:1-7)
Not much has changed. Today households worldwide celebrate the birth of Christ but there is no room for Christ in their homes, either. No room in their “inns” for Jesus Christ.
Years ago I read a Chicken Soup story called Trouble in the Inn. It was about a Christmas pageant performed by some second graders. Ralph was to be the innkeeper. Ralph had been held back a year or so and was big, awkward, slow-moving, and slow- thinking. Ralph wasn’t thrilled about his assignment. He wanted to be a shepherd but he finally agreed to play the part of the innkeeper. Rehearsal went okay and the much-anticipated night of the performance came.
When Joseph and Mary arrived at the innkeeper’s door, Ralph was reluctant to say his lines but as Joseph kept asking to come in, Ralph rose to the occasion. “Look elsewhere!” he said. “The inn is full! There is no room for you. Begone!”
As Mary and Joseph turned to leave, Ralph’s eyes filled with tears. “Please, don’t go,” he said. Pause. Dead silence. Then Ralph smiled and spoke. “You can have my room!” That was quite possibly the best Christmas pageant those people ever saw.
The abundant life makes room for Jesus at Christmastime. When Jesus knocks, the abundant life says, “Come on in. Glad to see ya! You can have my room. Thank you for bringing salvation to us. Help us celebrate your birth.”
“…I have come that they may have life and that they
may have it more abundantly.” ~John 10:10 (KJV)