Hi everybody, I’m David Butler. I’m Emily
Freeman. We are thrilled this week to be teamed up with LDS Living for a
Christmas extravaganza! Really it’s a Christ-centered Christmas celebration.
And those are practically the same thing. What we’re doing each night this week is
we’re focusing on different people in the Nativity story as we get ready for
Christmas next week. So every single day there will be a short video that you can
watch and in the video it will highlight one person. And you’ll watch for the
story that person has to tell, the lesson they teach, and there will be a tradition
every night. A simple tradition you can do every night leading up to Christmas.
We can’t wait, so happy y’all are here. Merry Christmas! Many years ago, when my daughter Megan
was between 3 and 4 years old, we were driving together in the car. There was a
break between Christmas carols, and in the break Megan said to me something I
will never forget. “She said, “Mom, I believe in Santa Claus and you believe in Jesus
Christ.” And then the song started and immediately what I thought to myself is,
“I have failed as a mother. I have ruined Christmas.” And as I drove
home, I thought to myself, “What could I do to change how we celebrate Christmas?” And
in our home, we love Santa Claus. We write letters to Santa Claus, we hang up
stockings for Santa Claus, and I realized I had spent all of our life teaching my
kids to believe in Santa Claus, but was I teaching them to believe in Jesus Christ?
And so I started thinking of ways that we could be able to do that in our home.
And I went home and I pulled out a Nativity scene and I set out the stable
and I thought, “This is where it has to start is with the story.” Some of the most
recognized words in all of the Bible and especially at Christmas time are the
beginning words of Luke 2 where it says, “It came to pass in those days, there went
out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. and all
went to be taxed. . . . Every one into his own city.” And you may remember that Joseph
and Mary descended from King David so Bethlehem was the city they went to.
So when she was maybe nine months pregnant,
they made the trek into Bethlehem to find that everybody else from the line
of David was also in there so the city was packed full of people. There was a
lot of busyness, there was a lot of crowds, and no place, no inn had room for
Mary and Joseph, which means no place had room for Jesus.
As you think about that busyness that Joseph and Mary were experiencing, we can
probably relate to that in our own life, especially during this Christmas season.
This is a time when we all are hustling around and we’re trying to get things
done and it is a busy season for all of us. As we think about what we’re doing
leading up to Christmas, we don’t want to add more to an already busy situation. We
just want to add something different. Maybe we can look at that night, that
first Christmas night when Joseph and Mary went away to a tiny stable. A holy
place, a sacred place where they could get away from everything. Where there was
a room for what was about to happen on that night. And maybe we can learn from
that lesson, maybe we can make room for Jesus Christ in our celebrations this
year. Maybe we can create sacred spaces and holy places as we celebrate a
Christ-centered Christmas this year. The invitation and tradition for this day
number one go together and it is somewhere in your house to display an
empty stable. And every time you pass by it, maybe you can think, “What can I do
this week or what can I do today to make more room for Jesus in my Christmas
celebrations?” See how easy it is to add something meaningful to your Christmas
celebrations? We’re just trying to follow the pattern of that first Christmas
night, simple. And you’re gonna find every tradition this week is going to be just
as easy as this one. We are so excited to come back tomorrow and introduce you to
Joseph. See you then!