Is There a Nativity in Your Heart?

My wife and I love Christmas. We love the festivities. We love the celebrating. We love getting together with our family. We set up tables and decorate our garage for the day. We usually have around twenty people on Christmas Day. My wife decorates for all the seasons but especially for Christmas. It gives her such joy. She goes all out. Every room has something of Christmas. Greenery, stockings, angels… Birds. The past few years she has begun to collect birds. Especially cardinals. She has numerous cardinals scattered throughout the house during the Christmas season. She has been collecting angels for over twenty-five years now. We have angels in every room as well. Ever since the nineties when she had several illnesses and people began to give her angels as God carried her through and delivered her from disease. After being told there was only a twelve percent chance cancer would not return in 1998, she is still cancer free. We praise the Lord! God has so blessed us! Outside, along with the other Christmas decorations and greenery, we have a sign highlighted by a flood light that says, “O come, let us adore Him!” Indeed! Come! Let us adore the Christ! The Messiah! The one whom our salvation has come through! As the angels visited the shepherds, they said, “don’t be afraid! We bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior, yes, the Messiah, the Lord has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David. And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find the baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.” And suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others, the armies of heaven, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” In the old testament, Isaiah foretold his coming. He wrote, “For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the Government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Yes, I’m told that over four hundred prophecies in the old testament told of Jesus birth; his life; his death, burial, and resurrection. No wonder the shepherds hurried to Bethlehem, to the nativity, to see this Jesus. As my wife decorates for Christmas, she places a nativity in every room of the house. Even the bathrooms have a small nativity scene just to remind us of what Christmas is really about.

 

As I was pondering the other day, the thought came, “Do I have a nativity in my heart?” Is there that room in our hearts where we have chosen to place a nativity? A reminder of the Messiah? That place that is a continual reminder of the birth of the Savior, both God and man, who humbly came to earth through a virgin woman impregnated by Holy Spirit? The Savior of the world came to give his life for our salvation! Do we have him in that place where we continually remember him? his birth? His sacrifice? His life here on earth? His death, burial, and resurrection? With all the celebration and festivities at Christmas, the business of life; do we have Jesus in that place where we continually are reminded of him? It’s so easy to place him on the back burner, so to speak. Do we celebrate him at Christmas but forget him the rest of the year? I wrote in another article: Opportunity + intentionality = results. If we have the opportunity (And we do). And if we approach it with intentionality (And we can). If we combine these two, we will see results. It’s as we intentionally, daily spend quiet time with the Lord. It’s as we intentionally and continually, read his Word in our Bibles. It’s as we intentionally, talk with him and talk about him to others. It’s as we find television programs or social media videos or church services that pour into us and teach us about him that we intentionally place the nativity of Jesus prominently in our hearts. I know a family who does communion each day, simply to make sure they remember him. He loves us so much. He gave his life for us. He was willing to endure an unimaginably cruel death for us. God, in his love and mercy gave his only Son. So this Christmas. And this next year. As we go about our busy lives, lets place a nativity in the rooms of our hearts to intentionally remind us of Jesus the Messiah. The Savior of the world is close at hand and living inside us. Let’s be sure we remember him.

 

By Vic Stinemetze