Making Room for Christ

A Christmas Message on Behalf of the Armenian Evangelical World Council

“Nativity,” Jean-Baptiste Marie Pierre, 1714-1789, (Public Domain)

Christmas is the celebration of God’s revelation of Himself in and through Jesus Christ. God reveals Himself in many ways—in historical events, in nature, through the Bible, through people and supremely through Jesus Christ. His revelation is called incarnation. Incarnation tells us the truth about God, His intervention in human affairs and His coming into this sin-filled world to save it.

Incarnation also tells the truth about human nature. That mankind has violated God’s will and has alienated itself from Him. God, however, wants to reconcile humanity with Himself, to restore the broken relationship and bring His sinful children to Him.

One of the central affirmations of Christmas is that in Jesus Christ we see the love of God for humankind made flesh; that in the fullness of time, in God’s most opportune time, He intercepted human history with the gift of a Savior to redeem the world which had lost touch with its Creator.

The greatest news of Christmas is that the God who came to mankind, in the Babe of Bethlehem two thousand years ago, can come to us today if we make room for Him in our lives.

In the nativity story of Jesus, the Gospel of Luke tells us why it was necessary for him to be born in a manger. It was because there was no room for the Holy Family in the inn (Luke 2:7). And the most obvious reason why there was no room for Jesus was because the inn was occupied to capacity. One wonders if the innkeeper could have done some rearrangement in order to accommodate them. Most probably he would, had he recognized the significance of the occasion.

An existential question that arises in one’s mind is: “If there was no room for Christ two thousand years ago, is there any room for him today?” It appears that some people are so preoccupied with so many earthly cares that there isn’t room for anything else, not even Christ.

Making room for Christ involves some rearranging of life. His very presence requires some commitments and changes. Those who have made room for Christ in their lives are those for whom Christ is Immanuel (God with us). They have experienced the joy of Christmas.

The advent of Christ into the world is not limited by time. Mary and Joseph held Him in their arms. We can hold Him in our hearts. If and when we do that, our Christmas celebration will truly be a joyous one.

Making room for Christ also means making room for our needy fellow humans. Referring to those who are hungry, thirsty, without clothes and are sick, Jesus said, “Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me” (Matthew 25:36). 

Today, once again, the Armenian people in Armenia, Artsakh and the Middle East are in turbulent waters. The Armenian community in Lebanon is in dire need of help. If we are going to make room for them in our lives, we should lend a helping hand to them.

This presents us with a two-fold challenge. One is to welcome Christ in our lives and the other, to love and care for our brothers and sisters. If we do this, this Christmas will be a most blessed one for us. 

Christ is born and revealed, to you and us tidings of great joy!

Rev. Dr. Vahan Tootikian

Rev. Dr. Vahan Tootikian

Rev. Dr. Vahan H. Tootikian is the Executive Director of the Armenian Evangelical World Council.
Rev. Dr. Vahan Tootikian

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