The Birth of Jesus

Caesar Augustus issued a decree over all the Roman Empire that a census should be taken of every living person. No doubt, it was to calculate how many tax paying citizens he ruled over, but despite how we felt about it, it was something we had to do. This was the first census taken whilst Quirinius was governor of Syria… the first of many.

In order to register our names, we were required to travel to our ancestral homes. My family line is that of King David, so I had to go to Bethlehem in Judea. Mary came with me, because we were engaged to be married. She was also nine months pregnant, so it wasn’t an easy journey to make.

The walk from my home in Nazareth took us the best part of a week. Normally, I would be able to make the 140km journey on my own in three and half days, but the going was slow because of Mary’s condition.

We travelled south along the flatlands of the Jordan River, then west over the hills surrounding Jerusalem, and then a little further south into Bethlehem. When we finally arrived, we tried to find somewhere to stay, but all the available rooms were taken by those who had arrived there before us. In the end, we settled for a spot in the corner of a stable. It wasn’t ideal, but it was warm and dry.

Whilst we were in Bethlehem, the time came for Mary to give birth. Her firstborn son was brought into the world with donkeys and a few sheep as witnesses. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him to sleep in a feeding trough.

Take a moment to reflect on the story you have just read.
(sometimes it is helpful to read it again, slowly)

*Was there something in this story that you discovered—or thought about—for the first time?
*As you think about the story, what questions do you have? What do you wonder about?
*How might this story change your perspective / beliefs / behaviors?

I would love to hear what you are discovering as you think through these questions.
Comments are moderated to ensure they are relevant to the story and questions above.

~ Christmas Story Collection ~

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