There’s was a road I hated driving in in my town. It’s a narrow double lane, no passing. I really like driving it because of the differing kinds of trees. I hated it because, if there was an accident, I couldn’t get to my house. There was no other road that I could take to get home.
It’s the advent season. Christmas is less about Jesus and even Christians are putting less faith in the the actual Christmas story.
The problem with that is that all roads run through Bethlehem.
Think about that road you hate driving on, but its the only one that get you where you want to go. There is something at the end of that road you want to get to. Your destination may be something like home, school, work, etc. or it could be success, joy or purpose.
We, as humans, are trying to make easy roads, short cuts to the places we want to go. We want to get there faster with the least amount problems. Think of that last short cut you took and thought it would be faster but it actually took you longer.
It’s the same with faith. For the follower of Jesus there are no easy roads, no shortcuts. Every road we try to take or create to get us off the road of faith in Christ runs right into or intersects with the road to Bethlehem.
God’s desire to bring the world back to Him, to restore peace in the human heart, was born in manger. His announcement was not to the powerful, but to poor Shepherds. The birth of Christ was the start of the road back to God.
The Shepherds heard the good news and immediately went to worship the Christ child,
So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. Luke 2:16
Many hear the good news and spend the rest of their lives building new road, seeing short cuts, try to find their a to what they want out of life. All the foot dragging, stalling, and avoidance will do us no good because, even at the end of our lives, hoping to get into heaven (or to whatever you think lies beyond) you will finds yourself on a road with a manger with a small child in whom you tried to avoid.
Even in death, and our hope for something more, all roads go through Bethlehem. It’s the only way home.
You can watch my online devotion below for more context