This is part of a devotional series preparing us to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Read part one here.
Jesus was born in a manger. Remember, his life reveals who God is. Jesus is the key to understand God fully. Through Jesus, Christmas opens up. Today, let’s consider the manger of Jesus.
The manger reveals that God is comfortable in messy situations. Animal droppings, animal feed and lack of warmth were probably all present in the manger. It was a feeding place for animals. Jesus is born into a mess. This is good news!
Jesus doesn’t need you or your circumstances to be perfect or right. His life can be birthed anywhere. No mess can stop God. Maybe you find yourself in a mess; I bring you glad tidings of great joy. Christmas declares that He is the messy God.
The manger also tells us that when our plans fail, God is not stumped. Mary and Joseph were planning on the inn to give birth. Their plan didn’t work and they ended up at the animal trough (Luke 2:7). This gives us such great insight into God. Failed plans are perfect for God’s plans.
It was in the unplanned place that God’s son was born. He can take any failed plan and transform it into the place of his goodness breaking in. We plan the best we can but life often gets in the way. We find the inn full. One of the reasons that Christmas is a season of peace is that his goodness towards us is never dependent on our plans. We can have peace; He is the God of failed plans.
1)Is there a mess where you need God? Ask him to show up just like Jesus did in the manger.
2)Failed plans can cause our faith to weaken or bitterness to take root. We can blame God. Has this happened to you? What does the manger teach you?