Our Little Town Of Bethlehem

Thursday, December 22, 2022
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Listen while you read: "O Come All Ye Faithful"1 (Lyrics)

Matthew 2:11 – On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. (NIV)

Most of us know the Christmas story at least in part, if for no other reason that we see Mary, Joseph, and the Baby in a traditional place in many homes at this time of the year. Usually, not far from the manger scene are the wise men — or magi, as some may call them. Baby Jesus was born in Bethlehem, and His mother was Mary. Since she was in the inn's stable, with animals all around, Mary placed her newborn in a manger, wrapped in swaddling clothes. Right?

Well, let me tell you another story that I witnessed many years ago. The manger was placed in the centre of the stage in our sanctuary, made with crudely cut slats of wood and filled with fresh hay. The bewildered mother, Mary, fidgeted and patted, but she could not calm sweet baby Jesus. But in her wisdom, she got up and handed him to the wise man standing nearby. Knowing what to do, this wise man jiggled and consoled him for the next thirty minutes while the rest of the program went on at our church. You see, that wise man was Larry, my sweet husband, and this beautiful baby Jesus was none other than our grandson, Nicholas. This baby recognized the gentle touch and familiar rocking of one who loved him so much and knew what he needed. So, in wise man garb, the man for the job comforted the wiggly infant in love.

Sometimes, especially in these uncertain times, we are anxious and worried about what might happen next, whether it be with our job, our health, or our world as we have always known it. But now, the roles in my little story are reversed. It is not Jesus Who needs to be consoled or brought up to date. He is not confused or bewildered by the current circumstances that we find ourselves in today. He is not wracking His brain to develop plan B, nor does He need a wise man to consult with Him.

Our Nicholas is a grown man now, but like all of us, he still needs comfort when times are hard and we find ourselves waiting for "the other shoe to drop" in this uncertain world. It is we, God's children, who long for His touch. We find ourselves thirsty in a dry land, longing for relief that can come only from God's Son, Jesus Christ. Let's reach out to Him for His comfort and consolation in our own little town of Bethlehem.

Prayer: Precious Jesus, help us, this season, to look forward in time from the manger to You, O Lord, the all-powerful King of the universe. Holy God, with You, nothing is impossible, not even the problems that burden our hearts today! Warm our hearts by Your unfailing love. Amen.

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About the author:

Jeanie Nihiser <jnihiserj@gmail.com>
Cerro Gordo, Illinois, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the encouraging words, Jeanie.

    Thank you for sharing your story today. It touched my heart. Blessings to you and yours this Christmas season.

    Loved your devotion today. Sometimes we forget whose birthday it is!
    Happy Birthday Jesus!

    Thank you, Jeanie, for the devotion today. It is meaningful and appreciated.
    (On, Canada)

    Thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Have a blessed and happy Christmas! Blessings.

    Blessings. Many thanks for using your gift of writing to encourage. How true we must look forward. Always.

    Great story Jeanie… and so well presented.
    Christmas blessings,

    What a beautiful story to share at this wonderful time of the year. Thank you.

    Amen Jeanie.
    May your Christmas be merry and bright in the light of His love.

    Thank you, Jeanie. I especially like your conclusion: It is we, God’s children, who long for His touch. We find ourselves thirsty in a dry land, longing for relief that can come only from God’s Son, Jesus Christ.

    Good morning, Jeanie,
    Thank you so much for that sweet story and the wonderful application.
    Have a blessed Christmas.

    Thank you. I’ve forwarded to my kids. We just had a conversation about memorable concerts, and you’ve summed it up nicely. Merry Christmas.

    Thank you, Jeanie, for this very reassuring and beautiful devotional. Your words are so very true, and we really need our loving Saviour in our lives more than ever these days. Blessings for this special writing and may the love and comfort of our loving Lord totally uphold you each and every day.

    Good evening, Jeanie,
    Why am I just reading this devotional at 10 p.m. at night I cannot explain, BUT reading it is the perfect way for me to end this day. It is a wonderful devotional.
    Thank you,

    Good morning, Jeanie,
    I love this memory of a twist on the Christmas story which played out at your church one year. I am sure it has brought smiles to many readers. Your message of the comfort that is waiting for us from the Lord when we reach out, is one we all need to be reminded of when our brains get clogged with worries and anxiety.
    Thank you for sharing hope, peace, love, and comfort with your memories. Merry Christmas and blessings.

    Dear Jeanie,
    Thanks so much for the wonderful Devotional today, it was awesome. I love the personal story of your grandson. What wonderful memories of that nativity play.
    May we all remember Jesus’ birth in the stable in Bethlehem as we celebrate this Christmas Season.
    Looking forward to more Devotionals from you.
    Thanks again.
    Blessings to you and your family this Christmas.
    (Ontario Canada)

    Thank you – that image will stay in my mind and heart, bringing a smile that will lighten and brighten my day.

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