Christmas Eve!! The day before Christmas is as we all know this day to be. The day before the grand finale of all anticipation that has taken over the minds of nearly every person in the world. The day before all the cookies that took soooo long to make and bake, are eaten within 15 minutes. The day before family and friends gather together to share in joy of knowing their Savior came to this earth as a new born, helpless baby in order to carry out the most gruesome death imaginable to mankind, for us to LIVE, or in most cases, just to open presents and eat food. The day before a glorious star lit up the sky of the world to prove Christ's arrival. This is probably the most anticipated "day before" day of the year. Christmas Eve always seems to draaaaggg out, and then Christmas itself gets here, and before you know it,, it's gone, and already the next year.
Over 2000 years ago, Christmas Eve wasn't exactly such as glorious of a day that it tends to be nowadays. Nope. In fact, it was probably pretty miserable... at least for two people named Mary and Joseph. These two were on their way, and probably at Bethlehem by now, to pay their taxes for Caesar. They were probably very discouraged from all the slander they had most likely received from the fact of Mary being "with child" and them not being officially married yet. And too make matters worse, when they finally arrive, there is not one single place for them to stay overnight. And if that isn't bad enough, Mary(who is most likely a 13 or 14 year old girl) is almost due to have a baby. Not just any baby though.. no, but the God of the Universe! Jesus Christ Himself,, all glory and power wrapped up into a tiny, helpless babe, kept silently in Mary's womb. Now, if that wouldn't put a tremendous weight on your shoulders, knowing that you are about to give birth to the God of the Universe, I don't know what will. So, after finding out that their only resort to sleep was an animal stall, you would find Mary and Joseph sleeping with animals, surrounded by feeding troughs and, well,, dirtiness. Doesn't exactly sound like the Christmas Eve that we've come to recognize in this day and age. The fact of the matter though, was that this was the best Christmas Eve that ever took place! God's glory filled that little, cold and dirty "manger scene," and pretty soon Mary and Joseph were about to experience the most remarkable thing imaginable. God was about to enter this world, into that manger scene, as a vulnerable, tiny baby! Can you imagine witnessing that?! All of the angels were probably abiding in that animal shelter watching over Jesus Christ and Mary. All of the animals in the shelter were probably in awe, and if they could talk or sing, they probably would have been singing "Glory be to God in the Highest!!" Joseph was probably speechless. Most likely being a 17 or 18 year old man, it would have taken extreme maturity to go what he had already gone through (being a "just" man, and not divorcing Mary, but instead trusting God), and then going through what he was about to go through (not just for the delivery, but for the next 33 years of Christ's life)! I know being 17 myself, I ashamedly must admit that I would not be able to go through that, especially with that amount of spiritual maturity. All in all, this was the day before all of God's glory was about to be revealed to this world and save it for ALL eternity!!!
So, as you go through this Christmas season, just take a moment to reflect and think about the true meaning of the season. Think of Christmas Eve as the day before the biggest showing of Love in this world, and not as the day before me, me, me. Give a lot this season,, because Christ has given us more than anything we have ever deserved.
Merry Christmas and may the Lord bless! :)