Monday, 16 December 2019

Each of Us Is An Innkeeper

"and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn."
(Luke 2:7; NIV)

This morning my wife and I both had a bit of an epiphany. While they came to us separately, when we later shared them with each other, it amazed us how they were really one and the same. We wondered if God might be saying something? Hmm, certainly for us it begged the question.

In her quiet devotional time, my wife came across two quotes attributed to Charles Spurgeon that caused her to pause and reflect. First, "For this child is not born to you unless you are born to this child." Secondly, "If you have room for Christ, then from this day forth remember, the world has no room for you." As she reflected upon those words, at the other end of the house in my own quiet place I came across the above beautiful image as I meditated on the birth narratives in the Gospels.

Each of us is an innkeeper.

I like that. I've never heard it put that way before, but I think it's true; we each have a decision to make as to whether or not we will choose to make room for Jesus. As the busyness of life races on, is there room for Jesus? Is there room for Jesus amidst the stressors of the job or the unemployment line? Is there room for Jesus on the school campus and during exam week? Is there room for Jesus in our entertainment choices and social gatherings? Is there room for Jesus when the kids are sick or a loved one passes away? Innkeeper, is there room for Jesus in you? Is there room for Jesus in me?

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6; NIV)

Going back to the Spurgeon quote, as much as the child Jesus was/is born to us, we too must be born to the child. Reborn, or born again if you'd rather, in and to Him. Spiritual rebirth into a new life. Jesus as our first priority, knowing that if He is truly first, all else will fall into its proper place in due course. Innkeeper, is there room for Jesus in you? Is there room for Jesus in me?

The paradox is seen in the second Spurgeon quote. If we make room for Jesus, the world strangely no longer seems to have room for us. Almost any cursory reading of any church history text will produce evidence of some measure of persecution or disassociation by the world towards those who have made room for Jesus. This is still true today. It's a choice and a decision that sooner or later, we all must make. Make no room for Jesus, and the world will generally love and accept you as its own; make room for Jesus, and the world has no room for you. That's okay if the world has no room for me. After all,

"What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Mark 8: 36-37; NIV)

Don't forfeit your soul. The babe in the manger comes as God's gift to mankind, but like all gifts, they must be accepted; room must be made in the inn of our lives. Innkeeper, is there room for Jesus in you? Is there room for Jesus in me? May it be so.

Something to think about.

From our home to yours, Merry Christmas.
Peace and Blessings.
_______________

You may also be interested in: What Christmas Means to Me by C.S.Lewis.

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