Merry Christmas! Is there room in the inn?

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While they were there, the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Luke 2:6-7

Is there room for Christ in your Christmas celebration? In your life? In your heart?

no-room-at-the-inn-for-mary-and-joseph-and-the-donkey-coloring-pages

Going Deeper

Read Luke 2:1-7.

The Bethlehem innkeeper often gets a bad rap for turning away the young couple and the unborn Savior of the world. How often have we turned God away or given him our second-best, just like the innkeeper?

  • Have I packed my schedule so full that I don’t have time to pray or to notice God working in my life?
  • Do I avoid making eye contact with the person holding the “will work for food” sign?
  • Am I happy to give God an hour on Sunday morning, but reluctant to invite him into my home or workplace?
  • Am I holding onto resentment, refusing to forgive someone in my life?

There are many things that can keep us from making room for Jesus in our hearts. As you reflect on what might be blocking Christ from permeating every part of your life, listen to “While You Were Sleeping.”

Choose one thing you will do to welcome Jesus more fully into your life.

(Click here to receive these reflections in your inbox throughout the Christmas season.)

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Who do you say that I am?

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Today’s Gospel reading, from Luke chapter 9, begins:

Once when Jesus was praying by himself, and the disciples were with him, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They said in reply, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, ‘One of the ancient prophets has arisen.’ ” Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said in reply, “The Christ of God.”                                      Luke 9:18-20

Reflecting on this passage, I wondered how Jesus’ questions would be answered today.

Who do the crowds say that I am?

According to Barna research (https://www.barna.org/barna-update/culture/714-what-do-americans-believe-about-jesus-5-popular-beliefs#.V2Da8rsrLIU):

  • 92% of Americans believe Jesus was a real person who actually lived.
  • 56% of Americans believe Jesus is God, while 26% say he was just a religious leader, on par with the Buddha or Mohammed.
  • 46% of Americans believe Jesus remained sinless throughout his life, while 52% believe Jesus committed sins, just like other people.

On-the-street interviews asking the question “Who is Jesus?” garner a variety of answers (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OB2cvvHtqsA, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=johNLhZ5y48, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hm308hopZhU, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YztvjePz0uk):

Who do people say I am Word Cloud

Who do the Bible and the Church say that I am?

Who does the Bible say I am

But who do you say that I am?

This is perhaps the most important question. I challenge you to think and pray about it, and write down your answer to this question. I would love it if you would share your answer with me.

Here is my answer, at this time in my life:

Who do you say that I am Word Cloud