Roman control versus God’s control, this is the conflict in this story. The Roman government ruled the civilized world at this time. Joseph controlled very little. He had to travel to Bethlehem to pay his taxes and his wife, Mary, had to go along. Not what Joseph or Mary desired or probably thought was good judgement. But they traveled that long distance even though the Roman government would not consider their situation and limitations.
But, God controls the world at all times and in all places. He works his will! And so the Son of God was born that night in a stable…not in his parent’s home. The prophecy comes true….out of the branch of David a Savior is born.
We often think that we are faithful and obedient, so why aren’t things going better? We face discomfort and inconvenience and immediately wonder if we have misread God’s will or if God made a mistake. But watch Mary and Joseph. Joseph was not given a shorter path or a less bumpy road. Mary was not given a luxurious inn to birth her first child. God doesn’t promise comfort and convenience. But we are promised that everything has meaning to God. In discomfort and inconvenience he will guide and provide for you. Mary and Joseph trusted that God was in charge.
Prayer: Praise God for the gift of His Son, Jesus, to save us from our sin. Ask God to soften our heart when life is uncomfortable and inconvenient that our faith and trust may grow in those times.