One of my favorite stories for the Christmas season is about a nine-year-old boy named Wallace Purling. Wallace was larger than most kids, he also had learning and relationship difficulties. But the children all liked him. He was so much bigger than they were, but he never intimidated them. In fact, he was the ever-present defender of the smaller boys.
Wally wanted very much to be in the Christmas play that year. He hoped he could be a shepherd, but the teacher had a larger part in mind. Wally was big enough to be the innkeeper, she reasoned. And so, it was that Wallace Purling got the part of the innkeeper. Oh, how he practiced!!!
The night of the play everything went beautifully. No one even missed a line. At last, the play came to the part where Mary and Joseph knocked on the door of the inn.
“What do you want?” Wally asked opening the door with a brusque gesture.
“We seek lodging!” came the response.
“Seek it elsewhere, the inn is full,” said Wally.
“But, we have tried elsewhere, we have come a long way, and we are very tired,” they responded.
“Go away. There is no room in my inn for you,” said Wally.
“But sir, my wife is pregnant. Don’t you have a corner where we can get out of the cold?”
For the first time Wally broke his icy stare and looked at Mary. There was a long silence. The audience was tense with embarrassment because they thought Wally had forgotten his lines.
“No, be gone,” the prompter whispered.
“No, be gone,” Wally said weakly.
Joseph sadly placed his arm around Mary as they began to move off the stage. Suddenly, this Christmas program became different from all the others. Wallace Purling could stand it no longer. Big as he was, and with big tears welling up in his eyes, he gave to the play a meaning that would never be forgotten.
“Wait, don’t go Joseph!!!” Wally called.
“Bring Mary back.” Wally’s face grew into a bright smile. “You can have my room and I will sleep out in the cold.”
Some people might say the pageant was ruined. But Wallace Purling caught the real spirit of Christmas. This is the true meaning of Christmas: Giving place in our hearts so that Jesus can be born.
The hearts of many are full of hatred, resentment, bitterness, disappointment and despair. Many people are overwhelmed by worries and anxieties. Many are tired of the constant struggles and obstacles. Many are frustrated and some don't want to fight anymore. The reasons may be because they are far from God, far from His presence, His love and His care. Therefore, in this Advent season, won’t you give Jesus “your room”?
Jesus desires more than just a place to live. He wants to sit on the throne of your heart and be the number one in every area of your life. He insists on being first place in our lives. Revelation 3:20 “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and will dine with him, and he with Me.”
The innkeeper had the chance to open the door for Mary and Joseph. But he let the birth of Jesus pass him by, and ignored his offer of salvation. Many are still missing the opportunity to come to Jesus to be saved. But missing a message from God is a mistake we may don’t want to make. You are never too old, too messed up, or too worn out to come to Jesus to be saved. Won't you give Jesus room in your life, so He could have room in your family?
The best Christmas is the one in which there is no room for self and plenty of room for Jesus. Open your heart for Jesus. Give Him the control of your life.
This Christmas may you experience GOD WITH US specially in your life and family.
Pastor Norberto Obermann