Luke 2:4 Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. 5 He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
It’s remarkable really. Our Lord Jesus, the Son of God, was born – in a stable. In a place built for animals, not for human occupation. I’ve stayed at some pretty bad hotels over the years, but none as humble as the birthplace of our Lord.
This morning I am grateful for Jesus’ birth. His life. His death. His resurrection. The fact that he took all of our sin upon himself and hung on a cross. Our God the Father raised him from the dead. And then, as an act of great mercy, made it possible for you and me to be claimed as children of God. Wow. I like gifts as much as anyone, but this truly is the greatest gift. Ever.
This morning I am also humbled. I am humbled that so many of you regularly join me in this space – over 1,100 and counting per day. I don’t claim to be a great writer, or particularly insightful commentator. This blog is a spiritual discipline for me. It’s a vehicle to help me be consistent in my reading and reflection on scripture. And I’ll be honest – there are some days when I just don’t feel like posting in this blog. But knowing that you are ready to read what I write encourages me to do so anyway.
Between now and January 4, I’m going to be taking a break from writing this blog. Jesus tells us in John 15 that we cannot bear fruit unless we abide/rest. Since I want to continue to be fruitful in 2016, I’m taking these next days as a time of rest. I’ll still be reading scripture each day, but I won’t be writing in this space.
That said, my break doesn’t mean you have to stop reading scripture. If you haven’t done so already, I want to encourage you to subscribe to the Moravian Daily Texts found here: http://www.moravian.org. You can sign up to have daily readings sent to you via email each day. This is the bible reading plan I follow as the basis for this blog. Try it!
Finally, I pray God’s richest blessings for you and yours in this Christmas season.
Pastor Ernie Hinojosa