Wednesday, January 14, 2015

No Room

You remember the story, don't you?  Mary, who is very pregnant, comes with Joseph to Bethlehem.  The time comes for her to have the baby, and yet there is no place for them.  They end up in a stable or a cave, and they place the baby in a feeding trough.  There was no room for Jesus.  William Barclay says that there was never any room for Jesus - the only place that had room for him was the cross.

Think about Herod and his attempt to kill Jesus by having all the first born sons murdered. Herod had no room for Jesus in his quest for power.

Think about the disciples.  At first, it seems they are making room for Jesus.  They answered his call and followed him.  But then think about Judas, who couldn't make room for Jesus in his expectations of what a Messiah would be.  Think about Peter, who, for a while, was unable to make room for Jesus, resulting in three denials.  Think about all the others, who were hidden away during the crucifixion.  Did they make room for Jesus?

Think about the Pharisees and the scribes.  They were constantly trying to trap him with questions and accusations.  Eventually, because there was no room for Jesus in their interpretation of the law, they worked to have him arrested and executed.

Think about Pontius Pilate.  He questioned Jesus and finally backed away from the situation, offering the crowds Jesus or Barrabas.  Then he washed his hands of the matter.  There was no room for Jesus in Pilate's governance.

Do we make room for Jesus?  Do we allow Jesus to enter our hearts and minds, to influence our decisions and action?  Where in our lives is there room for Jesus?

Jesus, though, makes room for himself.  He made room for himself on the cross, he made room for himself in our lives because to leave us alone meant that there would be no room for us in front of God.  Jesus made room for himself so that we could have a place as children of God.  Thanks be to God.

So, what is our response?  Do we make room for Jesus in our lives and in the world so that others can have a place?

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