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No Room At The Inn

December 20, 2014
by Lynne Phipps   —   Audio controls are below the devotional to listen to this devotional or to hymn music while you read

Luke 2:6-7 – While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. (NIV)

The four goats were at it again, driving the fifth goat, Rosie, away from the feed and not allowing her into the warmth of the barn. Goats have a pecking order, and unfortunately for Rosie, she was bottom gal on the list, which meant that she had to rush in and out from one pile of hay to another just to grab a mouthful before being driven away. How she shivered as she waited to be allowed the last place in the stable on frigid winter nights, while the other goats nestled down in the warmest spots.

Rosie's dilemma reminds me of how I expect Mary and Joseph may have felt as they discovered that the inn was already full. No room, no room at the inn for you, your wife, the expected Child — God's greatest gift of love to mankind. No room: no room for You.

What harsh, cold words these must have been. How lonely Mary and Joseph must have felt. How they must have been seeking God's face to understand what they were to do. He had given them a gift to share with the world, but where did they fit in? How did it all fit together? Where were they to go?

And then, when all else had been tried, they found a stable, a place of rest, a place to be alone to birth the blessing of God for all mankind, for there was no room at the inn. But God did not need a room at the inn. After all, the earth and everything in it were His to give. It was not that He could not have supplied better accommodations for the birth of His Son and the comfort of His earthly parents. The stable was of God's choosing, that the hearts of those who have felt left out, who have experienced no room at the inn of life, would know that there was One Who understood their heartache, their pain and loneliness, the pain and loneliness of rejection, of no room at the inn.

That stable in all its earthy humility became the first true church of Christ as the doors were open to both poor and rich alike: to the shepherds, the outcasts of their day, as well as to the wise men, wealthy, well-educated foreigners from afar — a place with room at the inn.

This week, as we go about our daily activities or enter our sanctuaries of worship, what will others find when they come a-knocking: room at the inn of our hearts where the living Lord abides, or the barred door of selfishness with no room for others?

Prayer: Father God, how lonely it is when there is no room at the inn. Cleanse the hearts of Your people of all but love, that never again will anyone experience the rejection of those whose hearts are to be the reflection of Your love. In Christ's name, we ask. Amen.


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About the author:

Lynne Phipps <lynnephipps@hotmail.com>
Atlin, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks Lynne, wonderfully expressed.


    Thought provoking as always Lynne. Have a Merry Christmas.


    Thank you for your thoughtful devotional. Wishing you a merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year.


    Thanks for this very thoughtful and inspirational message today, Lynne. May we always make room in our hearts and our lives for Jesus and for those who are lonely and have nowhere to go.


    Dear Lynne,
    Once again, your animals provided a wonderful spiritual analogy and this one was perfect for Christmas.
    Peace and Blessings.


    Thank you, Lynne.
    Beautifully written.
    I needed this message this morning — and it has prompted me to pray for some people I’d otherwise not even have thought of.


    Dear Lynne,
    What a powerful devotional! “God with Us” came in an auspicious manner. The future of us and the world would benefit from His presence. Praise Him! Thank you for giving real meaning to this Holiest of seasons. Merry Christmas to you and yours! Keep writing!


    Thanks so much for the lovely devotional you sent us through Presbyterian Devotionals. It moves me to realize what I never experienced – being an outcast. And what our Lord understands well!
    Thanks and praise for the love of such a God and Saviour.
    May you, too, experience Christmas blessings.


    Thank you for inviting me into your world of goats, dogs and horses; into life in a rural setting; into the processes of your mind and heart.
    What joy it gives each time I connect with an e-devotion, whose writers are fast becoming friends in the spirit of Christ.
    Lynne, you are sharing a precious gift and it is deeply appreciated.


    Beautiful words you painted the painting in my minds eye.
    Praise be to the KING of KINGS & LORD of LORDS!
    MERRY CHRISTMAS! Lynne, to you & yours, I ask in JESUS name that FATHER rain HIS blessings upon you & yours, both two & four legged.
    (Texas)


    Very well said Lynne,
    When I ponder the church at Laodicea, I feel the same thing happening again. No room for Him in His own church. He is on the outside of His church knocking to get in.
    No Room — A tremendous picture of how a harden heart thinks of Christ.
    Thank you for sharing this meaningful thought for today.


    Dear Lynne,
    That’s a real devotional.
    You made me feel deeply for Mary and Joseph and for the Child she bore that so few knew was — and always will be — the Greatest ever.
    We pray that God will grant us the grace and ability to continue to publish devotionals that will be a magnet to draw many to believe in, and worship, our Lord.
    May God bless you now at Christmas, and forever.
    And I pray that he’ll keep you writing precious devotionals.


    Good morning Lynne:
    Your devotional, today, has an excellent message. Thank you.

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