How ironic! Jesus experienced rejection even before he was born. “She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:7) There was no room for Jesus in the inn, so Mary and Joseph had to settle for a cave that was used as a stable for animals.
While these circumstances may have served God’s purpose in taking on our humanity in the humblest of settings, you have to wonder what the innkeeper might have done had he known who Mary and Joseph were and what was about to happen.
We should not be too harsh in judging the innkeeper, for how often have we failed to make room for Jesus in our lives? There have been times in my life when I made more room for my career than I did for Jesus. There have been other times, when, like the innkeeper, I did not recognize Jesus in a colleague looking for someone to talk to or the street person looking for help on the streets of New York.
The good news is that God never ceases to give us opportunities to make room for him through his son, Jesus. He is always inviting us to open the door of our hearts so he can reproduce himself in us through the power of the Holy Spirit. He is always inviting us to love, to forgive, to serve — to build his Kingdom on this earth in the daily circumstances of our lives.
As we celebrate the day when the God of all creation became one of us at a specific time and place in order to change our lives and the course of history, let us renew our yes to him, our yes to Jesus and our yes to the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
Am I making room for Jesus today in how I relate to my spouse, my children, my colleagues at work and the stranger for whom there is no room in the inn?