In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.
Luke 2:1-5 NIV
It is the last Sunday of Advent – the Advent Sunday of Love. Christmas is almost here. Our waiting is almost over.
Love is the thing that underpins every part of the story of Jesus’ birth. It was love that drove God to send his son to us. It was love that made Jesus choose to be born as a helpless infant. It was love that made Mary say yes to mothering Heaven’s child. It was love that kept Joseph from breaking his engagement to Mary (even quietly) and allowed him to be the earthly father of Jesus.
It was all about love. Love of God, love of family, love of humanity.
The journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem could not have been an easy one. For these young, soon-to-be parents, traveling by donkey over rocky roads. But love spurred them on. And they would be rewarded with love when their son, God’s Son, came into the world.
This Advent, may your journey be driven by love. May you be rewarded with love as you gather with friends and family, as you worship, as you celebrate. May you know – ultimately and without doubt – that you are personally and steadfastly loved by the creator of the universe.