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12/24/2016

IN THE ELEMENTS

And she gave birth to her firstborn Son and wrapped Him
in swaddling cloths and laid Him in a manger, because
there was no place for them in the inn (Luke 2:7).
Read Luke 2:6-7.
 
On Christmas Eve my thoughts goes back to a "live"
nativity when I was a teenager. I was dressed as a wise
man, and it was freezing cold. Each of us stood shivering
and shaking, waiting for our shift to end, so we could
thaw out our aching toes and wrap our frozen fingers
around a steaming mug of hot chocolate.
We don't know what time of year Jesus was born. But
whatever time of year it was, Joseph and Mary had to lay
their Child where no one would ever want to put a
newborn -- out in the elements, with only a crude shelter
for His protection.
 
Do you have a manger scene in your front yard? If so,
spend a few minutes there tonight. Jesus willingly left His
glorious throne in heaven to share the chill of nighttime
and the grinding heat of the summer sun. He experienced
our hunger and thirst, sleepless nights, and long difficult
days.
 
But more than any of us, He experienced a crown of thorns,
a brutal whip across His back, and nails driven into His
hands and feet. He took our sins on Himself and felt the full
weight of God's wrath, so one day we will live forever in
God's presence where, "They shall hunger no more, neither
thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any
scorching heat" (Revelation 7:16).
 
THE PRAYER:
 
Lord Jesus, You left the comforts of heaven to share the
difficulties of our life. Through Your suffering and death in
our place, You opened heaven to us. Fill our hearts with
joy this Christmas and every day until we stand with You
in paradise. Amen
 
(Advent Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries)

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