Preparing Room

On this second day of Christmas, I’m still reflecting on the Christmas story. The Inn-keeper in the Bible Story of Jesus’ birth intrigues me. He leaves much to our imagination.

With the census going on for the entire Roman World, you know his inn must have stayed full at 100 percent occupancy. He was truthful to Mary and Joseph.

The Inn-keeper certainly wasn’t a mean man. In fact, I can sympathize with him. Guests checked out, then more guests with reservations checked in.  He was trying his best to be hospitable by offering a stable/cave and manger out back.

Little did he know he was too busy in his life for the Savior of the world’s birth. Ouch. That hits home. During this Christmas season, my quiet time with the Lord has been cut shorter and shorter because of a long to-do list. I’m just like that Inn-Keeper.  I’m guilty.  This message is for me too.

“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.” –Luke 2:7 NIV

Anything of value in our lives requires us to make room.

We make room in our time schedules, our budgets, our hearts for a new relationship we value. Even for Christmas we made room, didn’t we?

To bring in our new wonderful-smelling Christmas tree, we moved over our comfy chairs, reading lamp, plants–whatever it takes. Box after box of Christmas decorations require us to move our year-round décor and replace with our valued Christmas festive decor. In a few days we’ll be moving all the decorations back out and placing our furniture back as it was.

In the Bible Story of Jesus’ birth, since there was no room in the Inn, Mary and Joseph resorted to a hay-filled stable, along with the smelly animals. Our Savior of the World Jesus was born in a tiny manger. The tiny manger was plenty of room for the King of Kings and was truly the first King-Sized Bed.

Even the favorite Christmas carol “Joy to the World” exclaims, “Let every heart prepare Him room.”

The big question is: How can I make more room in my heart, my schedule, my budget for Jesus? He wants our whole heart, my whole heart. So many times I don’t make enough room with my hurried schedule, my shortened quiet time, quick prayers.

Frederick Buechner sums the Inn-Keeper’s perspective up beautifully in “The Birth” from Magnificent Defeat:

“But this I do know. My own true love. All your life long, you wait for your own true love to come–we all do–our destiny, our joy, our heart’s desire. So how am I to say it, gentlemen? When He came, I missed Him. Pray for me, brothers and sisters. Pray for the Inn-Keeper. Pray for me, and for us all, my own true love.”

The exciting hope and Truth is that we who believe are all “IN-Keepers.” Jesus loves us so much and wants to reside in our hearts for eternity. Jesus is our only Way “IN” to eternal life. “Jesus answered, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by me.'” –John 14:6.

Please forgive me, Lord, for being too busy. I’m excited to make much more room for You. Take my whole heart, Lord. Lord Jesus, move everything else out to make all the room You want and need in my heart. You are the only way IN to eternal life. I desire to be a true “IN-Keeper.”  In Jesus’ name, by the Power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.


–“Make room for us in your hearts.” –2 Corinthians 7:2a NIV

–“ ‘Say to the owner of the house he enters, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is my guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples? He will show you a large upper room, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.’” –Mark 14:14-15 NIV

“I’m prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love. Here’s my heart, Lord, take and seal it, seal it for thy courts above.” –Come Thy Fount of Every Blessing


–How can I make more room in my heart, my schedule, my life for Jesus? Please comment

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