Pondering Christmas

mary_holding_child“Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart, (Luke 2:19).

Luke’s purpose in writing his Gospel account was to “carefully investigate everything from the beginning,” using the testimonies of “those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word” (Luke 1:3, 2).  Tradition holds that one of those eyewitnesses was Jesus’ mother Mary.  That is why we find such a rich account of our Savior’s birth.  Who better to retell that wonderful story?

Our key verse is one that always touches my heart as a mother.  I have my own “treasures” of my son’s birth and early years that I often pull out and remember.   Mary had much to ponder over – what might all this mean?  Gabriel’s announcement to her – “You will be with child and give birth to . . . the Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:31, 32).  Her cousin Elizabeth’s greeting – “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear” (Luke 1:42).  Joseph’s loyalty – “Joseph did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife” (Matthew 1:24).  The long, difficult journey while she was heavy with Child (Luke 2:4-5).  The mean and lowly stable and the animals who witnessed the birth (Luke 2:6-7).  A group of stunned shepherds talking excitedly about a chorus of angels and the brightness of God’s glory (Luke 2:8-18) –suddenly hushed at the sight of her baby boy.

Every mother has a treasure trove of memories from the birth of her children.  No doubt she remembers counting His fingers and toes, and smoothing the curl on the top of His head as He slept contently in her arms just as I did.  For the moment He was Mary’s sweet little baby boy, but he also held the hope and promise of God’s redemption for the whole world.

For the remaining days before Christmas, let’s spend some time pondering who this Baby in manger truly was.   Let’s look for the details of the Christmas story.  Let’s join Mary and treasure them up in our hearts.

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