Each year, the Christmas season compels people to ask the Christmas
questions. What's the big deal about the baby in the manger? Who was he?
What does his birth have to do with me? Of all the responses to these
questions, there is one that stands out from the rest: Because of
Bethlehem, God knows what it is like to be a human. When we talk to God
about our challenges, our struggles, and our tough times, he
understands, because he's been there. He's been here.
Bethlehem, we have a friend in heaven. We have a Savior in heaven.
Christmas begins what Easter celebrates. The child in the cradle became
the king on the cross. Because he did, there are no marks on our record,
just grace. Because of Bethlehem, we have the promise God is always
near us. Always for us. Always in us. We may forget him, but he never
No day is accidental or incidental. No acts are
random or wasted. Just look at the Bethlehem birth. A king levies a tax.
Joseph is forced to travel. Mary, as round as a ladybug, bounces on a
donkey's back. The hotel is full. The hour is late. The event is one big
hassle. Yet out of the hassle, hope was born. Christmas reminds us that
"everything works together for the good of those who love God" (Romans
8:28). And long after the Christmas guests have left, the carolers have
gone home, and the lights have come down, that promise endures.