"Then" was Mary, Joseph and Jesus, in a stable. "Now" is me in an airport. How similar? How different?
We're all on a journey, spending the night away from home in less than comfortable surroundings. Glad I'm not nine months pregnant--giving birth in such a place, and thankful that the smell here is quite...normal--no barn smells. Although I'm pretty exhausted, the rigours that have caused mine are different from theirs.
They didn't seem to complain, at least we don't hear about it. I haven't been complaining either. Kind of used to this routine. Perhaps we've all learned to trust God as the one over and above our circumstances...well, sometimes I can trust Him this way.
Mary, travelled accompanied by her loving husband, in the company of other travellers in similar situations, and in the presence of God...inside of her. I wonder if she felt like she was in the presence of God. No husband here. I am in the company of others whose flights have been delayed. I, too, travel in the presence of God, though I have had virtually no 'inspiring thoughts' or meaningful impulses. As much as I had wanted to enjoy advent meditations, and be moved and reflective, jetlag and a head cold have dulled all such thoughts. No sense of connection with God, being led by Him, or what He might be saying to me this day, at this season.
As they travelled was it in the awareness of the great purpose they were to fulfill, or just because they had to? They were aware of part of the purpose of their situation. Did they remember the Bethlehem part of the prophecies? Or did they fulfill important purposes just in the living and doing what needed to be done each day? My purpose in this trip is not nearly as grand as theirs, but theirs was for them and mine is for me. I'm aware of some of the purpose, but wonder if there might be more that I don't know.