Places are important in our lives. They represent where we live, where we go, where we work and where we want to go. Places give our journey direction as we seek out certain places and avoid others, yet this is a part of who we are and what surrounds us. We’ve all lived long enough to develop our tastes of what is attractive and what we want in places we like. We react accordingly when it feels good or bad, and tend to gauge our routes based on where we want to be.
Think about how many times you’ve been to your favorite restaurant, how many hours you’ve spent at work, or how many times you’ve gone to the same gas station. Places are a huge part of our daily routines, and in some way they make up our community. Everyone wants to go to a place where everyone knows their name. It’s inherent, and no one is exempt. We were made to thrive in community, so places give opportunities for that to happen. Starbucks, shopping malls, food courts, living rooms, backyards and more are examples of these places.
Jesus has places too!
There are Christmas Places where God likes to go and do great things. The story of Christmas is Christ coming to earth and changing the landscape of how we love and do life. He is Emmanuel, God with us. However, these places are not covered in gold, or arrayed in precious jewels but rather they are simple, humble and unassuming. He goes to places that others overlook, places people think have no value or have lost their glow. These are the places He loves, and He frequents them often, seeking to do great things and show Himself strong.
Christmas Places were first located at Christ’s birth, when He was relegated to a cave of some kind, where animals dwelled. It was at this place that the King was born. It was at this Place where the Savior of world was born, thus changing history forever.
“And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a feed trough. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, And on Earth peace, goodwill toward men.”Luke 2:12-14
Notice the Christmas Places in these verses. He was lying in a feed trough wrapped in simple clothes, and this was the sign of the Son of God and who the shepherds were to worship. It was the place that changed human history and allowed men in the field to see Jesus and angels. Heaven invaded their places, and it speaks to our places, too.
We know this story, but it’s so easy to forget the types of places Jesus likes to go. He’s attracted to the humble, simple, unassuming places where people are hungry, maybe broken, and reaching for Him. He gives grace to the humble and He comes to their aide; therefore, we must resist the places of pride. This is easier said than done, but it’s true and it’s a key foundation to our faith.
Where are these Christmas Places?
His Places are not buildings, monuments or museums, but rather they are hearts of men of women. This is where he dwells. His favorite place to be is with us, since He died to have us! Think about how big that is. Our God, who dwells in the heavens, wants to be where we are and to live within us. This means our journey of faith is creating a Christmas Place in our hearts where He wants to live and visit. This means we live humbly and reverently before Him, honoring His love and counting nothing as common, because this is Christ in us, the Hope of Glory.
So the question is, does He like your Christmas Place?
Remember, pride makes excuses, humility makes adjustments. What adjustments are you making today? I encourage you this Christmas season to resist pride and embrace humility. Know that you need Him, He’s your answer and with Him you have everything. Determine to be a Christmas Place that He likes to come to and do great things! This is what He wants today. Run to Him as you are with no pretense, no performance, and no pretending. His love is greater!
Have a great Christmas and may you and your family be Christmas Places this season,