Today is the final day of Advent.I want to thank everyone who journeyed with me and Meghan as we tried to tell God’s story from the beginning to the birth of Jesus. I also want to say a giant thank you to Meghan for making such lovely Christmas Tree ornaments everyday to help us to remember our Advent lesson. If you want to take a look back on any post you may have missed you can do that by clicking here.
The Christmas story is a big one. There are so many people involved. There are world leaders like Ceasar and Herod. There are distant travelers like the Magi. There are great heavenly beings like the Angels. There are outcasts like the Shepherds. And of course there is Mary, and Joseph, and finally a baby named Jesus.
I have heard and told the Christmas story more times than I can remember. But I remember a few years ago when the story pierced me like new again. It was when I read a version of the story that decided not to use the word ‘manger’ but instead said ‘feed trough’. When I read the words feed trough I felt kind of mad, almost upset. I thought, ‘that’s not right. Jesus shouldn’t be placed in something that animals eat out of.’
I think for the first time it hit me I never actually knew what a manger was. I had only seen one in Christmas pageants with kids dressed up as shepherds, angels, sheep, and Mary and Joseph. It was a little wooden thing filled with blankets that fit a doll just perfectly. It was neat and tidy and clean and cute. Feed troughs aren’t any of those things. They are filled with bits of food, and dirt, and bugs and animal slava. I am sure Joseph brushed it off first but still, it was a feed trough.
Jesus entered our world fully and muk first. He came to be with us, as one of us, to help us. The manger, the feed trough has become a symbol to me now. Kind of like the cross. It reminds me that Jesus came in a humble way and lived in a humble way. It reminds me that he is teaching me to live in a humble way too.
Today on the final day of Advent we remember that Jesus entered to world humbly to teach us humility as well.