A Messy Miracle
This Christmas, I just bet you will stumble across a live nativity at a local church. If you look real close you will see Gabriel’s blue jeans peeking out from beneath his white robes. Mary will have on a little purple glitter eyeshadow. Joseph will be wearing camouflage Crocs. There will be shepherds and three wise men with crumpled pieces of paper in hand because they can’t remember all their lines. You’re sure to find a gaggle of giggling angels doused in glitter with feathers on their wings strapped on their backs. I bet there will even be a tattooed one, with a mowhawk and a crooked halo. The live animals very well may poop and the innkeeper may even get tickled about it. Somewhere on the side will be the play director, sweating regardless of the cold weather and praying beneath her breath. All of this, in all of its everyday reality, may appear to be the same ol’ same ol’ reenactment of the nativity story, but look with more than your eyes. Look with your heart and you will see clearly what it really was like on the night that our Jesus was born…. a messy miracle.
A messy miracle. Mary and Joseph were looked upon with furrowed brows and eyes of judgement. Imagine the young, frightened, unmarried Mary and the overwhelmed, tired, stressed Joseph. On their journey did they silently wonder what baby Jesus might look like? Would he have Mary’s eyes or Joseph’s nose? What were the individual stories of the shepards? Perhaps they were poor, and they worried about feeding their families as they watched over the sheep by night. Maybe their bills were long overdue and they had to pay more taxes. How about the innkeeper? Did he argue with his wife or struggle with his business? Let’s really talk about a mess. What about going into labor on a donkey with no place to go? It was a virgin birth in a barn where animals live and poop. There was no doctor, no epidural, no medicine….not even hot water… but yet in spite of the mess, the miracle of all miracles, the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ….He was God in the flesh, y’all.
A messy miracle. The people acting in the play have lives that are full of problems. They pay bills and worry about debt. They argue with their spouses. They struggle with addictions. They get depressed. They go to work when it is dark and they come home from work when it’s dark. They are tired and weary. Why, even the children in the play are a sight. That littlest angel over there got a spanking on the way to the church for punching her brother! Do you see? He’s the shepherd with the fresh black eye. Let’s really talk about a mess. They have issues, and worries, and drama, and a past that you wouldn’t believe….but yet in spite of the mess, a miracle. God uses them. Despite their hurt, their fear, their frustration, He uses them to do His work. He uses them to love on the community and encourage others…They are being the hands and feet, y’all.
Messy miracles. God specializes in them. God wants to use you even though you are a mess. All you have to do is make yourself available. There really are no excuses.
Hark, dadgum it!!!