MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL and to all—Get out of my way!
As wonderful a time of the year that Christmas is suppose to be, more often than not we hear people grumbling about not finding the right gift for the right people, or standing in line to buy the wind up monkey pocket vacuum because they couldn’t really find anything else. More likely they complain and curse about the parking lots around the shopping malls. “I only came for one thing, and spent an hour looking for a space to park.” So did everyone else, fella.
The other day a woman practically cursed out my mother who was only being nice to let her enter the store first. Thousands of people show up in shopping malls between Thanksgiving and Christmas that never go near those stores the rest of the year and we complain that they’re always in our way. Remember we’re a crowd to someone else.
As terrible as that all is I want you to think of something. Think of a young couple caught up in a crowd far worse then the one you were in today.
They had traveled a distance from their small town until they reached the city. Though the city is where the man’s family came from they may have been there before. The crowds have over flown the city having come from far and wide. To make matters worse none of his family wants to have anything to do with them. His aunt and uncle refuse to recognize them. His cousins would walk on the other side of the street when they approached.
Why was this?
Simple, they’re all offended by the fact that his young wife got knocked up before they were married. She claims the Holy Spirit visited her one night. So his family sees the girl as an adulterous (I chose not to use a stronger word) with a bastard son on the way. A ruin to the entire family.
Because of this none of his family will spare a room or roof for the young couple to spend the night while they’re in the city. They couldn’t even find a corner at the local pub. Someone finally took pity on the pregnant mother and let them spend the night out in the garage.
If it was today, imagine them in the back of the mall parking structure, stuck between SUVS in compact spaces. After all, the animals around them probably belonged to everyone who had traveled to the city for the census.
In the most crowded and dirty of cities a child is born.
So remember that on this Christmas Eve when you’re running out to find that last minute gift, for that aunt you forgot, and must fight the parking lot hordes rushing for the mall. Remember that Joseph and Mary struggled through far worse crowds in far dirtier environments and the gift they brought into the world is far greater than you can get at the mall or online.
On this eve of our savior’s birth, I wish you all a Merry Christmas.
Kevin Paul Shaw Broden