The smell of the stable was ripe. The sheep, donkey, and cows filled the air with their special perfume. The straw was well used and dusty. The stone walls cool from the night air. The screams of child birth filled the ears of the animals. The sudden cry of a new born baby.
A special night for mankind, the most important night, took place in the lowest of places. Who would have thought that the One who would rescue mankind would be placed in a bed of straw? Who would have thought that the Shepherds, who next to the leper, was the lowest on the human scale of class and dignity, would be the first ones the Angels would announce the birth of the King to? Who would have thought that a virgin would give birth to the Savior? Who would have thought?
An uncommon place for an uncommon birth for an uncommon Baby. The Christ Child. The Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. The Bright and Morning Star. Immanuel, Prince of Peace. Friend. Brother. Savior. God's free gift to mankind.
Enjoy this holiday, but embrace the reason for it. It isn't gifts, Santa, or even being with family. Those are the side benefits. The true reason is to celebrate the One who left Paradise to live among us, show us how to live, and then pay the price we could never pay. The birth of my Friend. The birth of My Savior.