Monday Devotional: December 13, 2021



For God Will Always Travel with Us

Scripture: Luke 1:39-45

Traveling has always been part of the Christmas story. Traveling has always been part of the entire Christian story. But more than that, traveling IS the story of human life. From ancient ancestors crossing the land bridge in the north or heading across vast seas on rickety little boats, we have always been on the move. We are always going somewhere.

Mary rushes to the home of Zechariah and Elizabeth. Joseph taking Mary to Bethlehem. The shepherds leaving their flocks behind to look for the stable. The three wise guys from the east chasing the star. The whole story is one of movement. Of God coming to us in the baby in the manger.

It will start this weekend. People piling into cars with the presents in the trunk. People heading to the airport to leave or to pick up. Homes are being cleaned and food is being bought and sheets are being washed – all part of the journeys of this season.

Not all of these journeys are full of joy. There will be fear, nervousness, anxiety in plenty of traveling hearts. There will be memories – good and not so good – of Christmases past and hopes that this year will be better or as good as “that one” was.

The season brings out the best of us and the worst of us and then drives us into one another’s company again. Because that is always what our movement has been about, to be together, to fight back the darkness, to strive toward hope, healing, life.

Then the moment arrives and we are there. Elizabeth hears Mary’s greeting. We come to that front door, or to that brightly lit church sanctuary, or to that street that always has brought us into our home town – we get where we are going and we are there. The child leaps for joy in Elizabeth’s womb.

The waiting is over. The trip has reached its destination. The family is gathered. The friends are all at the table. The organ is playing and the congregation is singing and the angel chorus echoes in the farthest reaches of our imaginations. And for those blessed with ears to hear, God is with us. Emmanuel. In the strangest of places. In the most unexpected of ways.

Bringing what? Bringing gifts. Perhaps joy, perhaps anger, perhaps fear, perhaps gratitude. But always bringing just what we need to take us to that next step on our journey. For God will always travel with us.

Have a wonderful God-filled Christmas.