Luke 2:7 - And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
I'm sure all of you know the Christmas story and what took place that wonderful night. But today I just would like to talk about the manger that held the baby Jesus. So many things could have been used to put Jesus in that night, but God chose him to be born in a small, wooden box used for feeding animals-a manger. You might say that God did not significantly choose the manger to be Jesus' crib that night, you might say that it was just a coincidence and that it didn't serve a special purpose. I believe that is incorrect. To me the manger is a symbol of so many things.
When you think about how God sent his only son-A king to be born in a humble stable full of animals, laid in a manger, and wrapped in swaddling clothes. How can you not be filled with wonder at the humility that took? God could have let Jesus been born in a castle, full of riches and laid in a beautiful crib, wrapped up in warm blankets. But God didn't do that. He sent his son to be born in a small manger. Why? I believe it was a symbol of not only his love for us, but a symbol of his character and of his perfection. God used that manger that night. A thought came to me the other day, one that I wanted to share with you:
God used the manger, just a wooden box, to hold his Son. Why can't be be content just being a wooden box God can use? Sometimes we think that to be something amazing we must be the smartest, brightest, and most beautiful thing, but God didn't use a shiny and big crib to hold his Son. All he used was a little, wooden, brown box. You might have looked at that same manger a night before Jesus' birth and have said, "There's just a wooden box just good for holding hay. It has no value. It has no worth." But if you had known that that same box would be used the next day to hold Jesus you would have thought sometime entirely different. You see God uses the simple things. You don't have to have some amazing ability to be used by God, he uses humble wooden boxes to do his work.
God can use anyone. When you think about how he used that simple manger, think about how much more he can use a person willing to do his work. God used a wooden box; he can definitely use you! You don't have to be the brightest person or the most talented. You just got to be willing. Be willing to be just a plain, wooden box willing to be filled with the Lord.
You see, the manger by itself is not significant. The thing that made the manger special was not the manger itself, but who was laid inside the manger. On our own we can not come to our full potential, but when you let Jesus in your life he will make you (a manger) into a miracle. Just let him in. Let him make you, just a simple person, into a masterpiece designed to fulfil his will.
I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas tomorrow. Remember that Jesus is the reason, not only for this season, but all seasons. Be willing to be a manger....and when you let Jesus in I promise you He'll bring forth a miracle!
Keep shining bright