If I was Writing the Christmas Story… Part Two
I wonder what the Christmas Story would look like if you or I were writing it today? I think that the first thing that I would do is change the cast of characters. What a screwed up group of people!
4. Some rough-looking shepherds. Our modern idea of shepherds is of little Johnny in the Christmas play wearing his bath robe, holding a broomstick and wearing a towel on his head. Shepherds were a tough lot. They were a group of violent men used to living outdoors. They were paid to guard their flocks from predators, the four-legged as well as the two-legged type. Think of the cowboys in the Wild West. These guys were a hard living group of guys. They were not the type of men that you expected to show up looking for a baby. They probably smelled bad and used bad words. Yet, they turned up at the stable to gawk at this baby with some crazy story about angels and bright lights.
5. Adoring friends and family? Actually, Mary had the Baby in a barn. Tradition says that it was really a small cave that was used as a barn. The only witnesses were probably her fiance, some sheep, goats, and a donkey or two. How lonely and scared Mary must have been! If this was ever time that a young girl needed her mother, this was it. This does not seem like the type of group who should be present to welcome a King into the world.
6. The Magi? These were pagan magicians. They were astrologers. Didn't the Old Testament forbid all that stuff? Are these the guys that we want welcoming Jesus into the world? Where were the Jewish religious leaders? Shouldn't they have been the ones to greet the newborn King? Instead, these gentile magicians were the ones who got down on their knees and worshipped Jesus.
Yep, if I was writing the Christmas Story, I'd come up with a cleaner, neater story. I guess that is why God did not ask for my help. Life is not clean and neat. Life is messy, gritty, and dirty. God stepped into history to deal with real people and their messy, drama filled existence. Thankfully, God is not afraid to get His hands dirty in the dirt of our lives.
Maybe there are parts of your life that you wish you could rewrite. If you could just delete that one night, that weekend, that relationship, your life would be so much better. Jesus came to earth as the Personification of God's grace. That grace is extended to us in Jesus so that our past can be healed. His grace also gives us the courage to live in the present and the hope to face the future.
Are there parts of your life that you wish you could delete and rewrite? How can the Christmas Story help you see those areas in a new light?
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