As the birth of Jesus approaches, we’ve all been reminded of the stories of His birth recorded in the Bible. This year, I’ve been struck by the wide variety of responses that Jesus’ birth invoked in those involved when they first heard the news.
Mary was obedient and thoughtful. Joseph was obedient while a bit bewildered. Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, while the King Herod plotted Jesus’ death. Having heard the angelic choir, the Shepherds hurried to see baby Jesus, while the Magi followed His star to deliver gifts.
And finally, since Jesus’ birth took place in a remote village on the very fringes of the Roman Empire, the vast majority of the world simply wasn’t aware. The Empire blissfully continued on its bloody path of enforcing Pax Romana, unaware that a new King with a new kind of Kingdom had been born.
It’s the same today. Some people embrace the Good News that Jesus came to proclaim. Most are indifferent, continuing on with their lives. And some see Jesus’ kingdom as a threat to their own plans.
Where do you see yourself? How do YOU react to the retelling of Jesus’ birth? Is it just a pretty story, or do you feel the Holy Spirit stirring within you as you re-encounter Him?