By Douglas Nelson
…. there was no room… Luke 2:7 (KJ)
He knew before he knocked; there was no room, but he was desperate. As the door opened, the inn keeper appeared from the darkness holding a lantern. Nodding to the heavy-with-child woman all he could offer was his stable. Guided by the borrowed lantern, the man led the donkey to the stable.
Hurriedly he bunched some hay into a makeshift bed. Then he gently lifted the woman off the donkey. Leaning backward, the woman waddled slowly to her birthing bed where strong arms lowered her. In the flickering light, the mother directed the skilled carpenter as he received their newborn in cradled hands. He tenderly washed his firstborn then handed him to the joyful mother. The mother fed and carefully wrapped her newborn in warm swaddling clothes. The earthly-father let his child settle gently into the manger’s hay where starlight bathed the newborn. The birth appeared so ordinary but the mother knew in her heart-of-hearts the conception was anything but ordinary– for she had never known a man.
Out of the darkness men appeared dressed in sheep skins, one carrying a newborn lamb over his shoulders. They asked in excited joy, “Is this our Savior the angels told us about this very night?” The parents, speechless but reassured, could only nod in wonderment.
Bowing to the Lamb of God, the shepherds laid their newborn lamb at the foot of baby Jesus.
Let me feel the Joy of the Shepherds on that holy night. Amen