I intended to post this between Christmas and New Year’s, but doctor appointments and health issues delayed me. How many times have you thought about the birth of Jesus in a manger? There are so many conflicting opinions as to exactly where this was and was it really where the animals were kept. Some say it was a lower floor of a house that was full because of the people who came for the ordered census by Caesar Augustus. It may have been an inn that was full because of the ordered census and a manger which was used to hold hay for animals could have held Jesus. None of this is my point. How many, when realizing we must be filled with Christ and put aside self and make room for Him, basically say there is “no room at the inn?” We all do. We only give to Him what we find is comfortable. It’s as if we entertain a spirit of accommodation. For most of us it’s hard to give Him access to all of us.
When we accept Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to take up residence in us. Yet, we so often relegate a crevice of our self for Him to reside. Enough for Him to be there, but don’t make a ruckus. Yet, we’ve said yes to Him by inviting Him to reside in us and then so easily forget what was done in order for us to be a vessel where He resides. Do we actually recognize who is coming to fill us? That this was sealed with the death of our savior? When something is asked of us, or when something happens that we perceive makes us uncomfortable, do we say yes? Or, do we say there is no room at the inn? We must give up the right to ourselves and let Him reign. We usually do that in increments. We give a resounding YES to what we believe His birth means, but not to the death of self that must accompany it. When Jesus cleansed the temple, everything contrary to our Lord was chastised and cast out. Do we realize our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost and we therefore have given tacit approval to be cleansed? We must be cognizant of that which must be kept clean in us and realize we give Him the right to also cleanse us. When we are born from above (born again), we look to identify with Him. Yet, I can say I so often have looked like something so contrary to that which I claim to identify with. We all do. But we must press on toward that upward call in Christ. To know Him and the power of His resurrection. Laying aside all that keeps us from walking in His fullness.
We are all at a place where we must take an honest assessment of where we are in Christ. Have we said yes to Him in even that which we find impossible or too confining? Have we come to a place that we can honestly say that which Jesus spoke were not just nice rules to live by but commandments? Can we look past ourselves and realize that by aligning with those who claim to speak for Christ, but whose actions are antithetical to all He taught, we are ourselves then in error? In fact, they are spurred on by an anti-Christ spirit. Do you continue holding hands with those who preach or practice a gospel that has no place in Him? Jesus was straight forward in all He spoke. Some He spoke to in parables and to some He explained the parables. He healed the ear of one coming to crucify Him and washed the feet of His betrayer, but also referred to Herod as a fox and called the Pharisees a brood of vipers. No one could mistake where Jesus stood on anything. Yet I see so many I’ve known for years align with false doctrine, lies, QAnon, insurrectionists, and listening to a gospel they once would have rejected but now believe a lie. They have learned selective hearing quite unlike that which Jesus taught. Hate, suspicion, bitterness and unforgiveness no longer feel like intruders in their life but are practiced without regret. These same people who once said they were against antisemitism now embrace it or those who practice it, and thereby causes evil to continue to affect race in this county. And they do not stand against the daily work of evil. They are therefore complicit and guilty of the same. When Moses said for the people to step away from Korah (Numbers 16) for his rebellion, they either did or they would suffer the same fate. And Paul said in 2 Corinthians 6 to come out from among them and be separate. It was a warning. Listen.
So many of us have become anesthetized to seeing what He puts before our very eyes. We have hardened our hearing and thereby our hearts. Yet because we have allowed Holy Spirit to have access to such a small part of ourselves, we cannot see it. Humility is not something we look for in a friend, leader or ourselves. Repentance has become a rote ritual. If we give Him more access to us, it will be seen. One will not have to go to the manger to find it. We all must surrender our will to Him thereby giving the Holy Spirit access to all of us. Not just a tiny, unattended quasi guest room. Our faith and confidence must be in Him. Not what we hear droning on daily from other sources. When was the last time you knew His truth was being revealed or spoken to? Or conversely a lie being quickly undone because of Him who we give access to in us? Oswald Chambers said, “I must place no confidence in my own works, but only in God. Trusting in my own mental understanding becomes a hindrance to complete trust in God.” This only comes by giving Him access to all of us and not saying there is no room at the inn.
Do we understand how giving more access to the Holy Spirit can impact us, and in turn, others? Rather than spewing division and hate, you may find your hearts open and full like the family in Buffalo, NY who took in the 10 stranded Koreans from a terrible snowstorm. Or you can choose to stand by those who send busloads of immigrants away based on something that has no place in Christ. Jeremiah 6:16 says, “Stand at the crossroads and see. Ask for the old paths, the eternal paths, where the good way is, and walk in it. You will find rest for your souls.” So many have not.We must. Do not give just a room, but ask Him to fill all of you. Daily. We have been sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise. And He is the guarantee of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory. I pray for each of us that we say there is “room at the inn” and that that the eyes of our understanding are opened and that we may know the hope of His calling. The same spirit that raised Christ from the dead dwells in you. Prepare an open and inviting dwelling place. Blessings.