Christmas Devotional - Day 4: Christmas is About The Manger

Sometimes God's will is tough to understand. You hear about something that seems incredibly unfair and you wonder how God will work in a mess like that. On the other hand, His word gives a lot of hope for such things, as He Himself was not at all exempt from gross injustices. In fact, it all begins that way, doesn’t it? 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. Lk 2:7. Here are the circumstances of Jesus birth as vastly understated by Luke. Not only is the Son of God's birth induced by a rough sixty-mile donkey ride, but there is no room in the local motel so a frigid stable has to function as His birthing room and a rugged cattle trough His cradle. He came from all the beauty, comfort, and glories of heaven to this?
It's tough to understand until we step back and take in the whole landscape, God’s big picture. What was He showing us? What was the purpose and lesson in this? One word, condescension [Condescension: n. kändəˈsen(t)SH(ə)n / voluntary descent from one's rank or dignity in relations with an inferior]. Jesus, through the manger, taught us His willingness to condescend to us.

Far beyond His condescension to the manger is His condescension to the human heart. The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick… (Je 17:9) and yet; “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him." (Jn 14:23) …so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith… (Ep 3:17). That dirty rugged manger was transformed into a holy sacred place fit for Jesus to dwell the moment He entered it. Jesus is not tainted by the unclean things He touches; rather the unclean things He touches are made clean and holy by His touch and presence (Mt 8:3). And our deceitful desperately sick hearts are transformed when by saving faith Christ condescends to enter us.  
In what ways has His willingness to condescend and live in your heart, transformed you? Think of three or four things God has changed in you. Write them out and offer them back to Him as Christmas thank you gift.  

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