There was poo on the floor.
Is there a better way to say that? Perhaps. But let’s be honest.
The place stunk. It was filthy. Smelly. Dirty. It was unsanitary. The air was filled with maddening, disgusting flies. It wasn’t fit for humans. I’ts why the animals were there.
Animals. Not friendly puppies and kittens, but cows, sheep, pigs, livestock. It was a barn. Actually a barn by today’s standards is probably an upgrade. Been in one lately? Cover your nose from the smell? Did you step gingerly to avoid stepping in the dung?
How would you like to eat dinner in there? Sit? Sleep?
How about having a baby?
If you were going to choose where to have a baby where would you choose? A nice, warm, sanitary hospital room with friendly, helpful nurses and doctors to help? A hospital with sanitized emergency instruments? Or even at home in the safety of your comfortable bed with the security of family and a mid-wife close by?
Is there any place worse to have a baby than a barn?
Why would anyone choose a dirty, smelly, unsanitary… barn. Yes, that is what is was. A place to house the animals. If you did have to have your baby in a barn, would you be excited and tell all your friends? “Hey, how wonderful! I had a baby in a barn next to the pigs and the cows!”
Or, would you feel humiliated. How lowly. What would your friends think?
"And they laid him in a manger." A manger. A manger is what the animals were fed from. Is that right? Did they really do that? Would you? This is not the cute, cuddly scenes we see in the Macy's store window. This was real life. A baby, in a barn, laying in the animals feeding area.
Doesn’t make much sense then does it that God, choosing to come to this earth and live with us would choose such a place to start out. God, the King of Kings, creator of the universe, omnipetent… gets born next to… the sheep and goats.
Shouldn't he have been in the Presidential Palace? The Plaza Suite?
Who would have thought? They were looking for a king and missed the King. They were looking for a prince, a ruler, a powerful man, a mighty man, a rich man. They would never have thought.
Christmas. Santa? New toys? Reindeer?
What is the real meaning? What are you looking for this Christmas? Or Who are you looking for? Find it? Find Him? Maybe we should all take another look.
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