I find myself currently somewhere between the “Lone Star” state, and the “Buckeye” state. Neither of which are my home. The spot on the map I currently sit on is in front of a Shell gas station and rain is giving us a free car wash. It occurred to me as I stretched outside the white and yellow walls of the station that I may be mugged at anytime and not one passer by would care. Now I know that’s not true, at least I hope it’s not.
However, with the number of unfriendly people I have met on this trip, it feels like the closest thing to the truth. Every individual I have had contact with on this trip has been unfriendly and even rude. Unlike the friendliness I am accustomed to in Colorado. Out here on the highways and by ways I feel alone and unwelcomed. This feeling got me thinking about how Mary and Joseph must have felt on their long journey to Bethlehem. Far from home and surrounded by strangers. Many slamming their doors in their faces. I thought about when my sister and I will arrive in Ohio my mom has made room for us. Mary and Joseph were not so fortunate or blessed.
They arrived to a “No Vacancy” sign, and were finally led to a home for livestock. Weary, and undoubtedly afraid, Mary gave birth to the Savior. And although we often sing silent night during this season, I doubt it was indeed a silent night. I don’t think it was a serene, pristine environment with animals rooting about. Then there was Mary’s labored breathing and Joseph gently encouraging Mary through her labor pains. Then to add to the commotion, God sends angels to herald the good news. Definitely NOT silent.
Then just as Mary gets Jesus to sleep, the shepherds appear. Arriving at the invitation of the angels. Talk about annoying. No wonder the Catholic church dubs her a saint. To endure all that she did is inspiring to me. I hope I will continue to ponder Mary and Joseph’s journey as I continue down the interstate. Feeling more grateful for these holy parents of my Jesus. Grateful for their perseverance and their care of my Savior.
And I am reminded that, because He came, I can now love on each person along the way to wherever I am going in life. I can ask Jesus to give me eyes to see where they’re at on their journey towards the King. Maybe they’re close. Like the shepherds in the fields. Maybe they’re still in the desert, following a faint light. Or maybe they’re 30 years down the road fishing in the Sea of Galilee. Wherever they are, I trust that Jesus will find them, and bring peace to their worlds. I pray He brings peace to yours too. As well as a heart to bless other weary travelers on this road towards heaven.
Remember this world is just a rest stop,