Summary: A Christmas sermon about how the birth of Jesus would have affected Mary.
On June 1, 1965, a boat set sail from Falmouth, Massachusetts. The name of the boat was Tinkerbelle. If it completed the dangerous journey, it would be the smallest boat ever to cross the Atlantic. It was less than 14’ long. And its pilot was Robert Manry.
And he was afraid. He was afraid, not of the ocean, but of those who would certainly try and talk him out of going. He was afraid of being discouraged by others, so he only told a few relatives and his wife, Virginia, as she was his greatest encourager in all he attempted to do.
The trip was a very rough one and he had many sleepless nights. His food became tasteless and his loneliness caused him to suffer hallucinations. On top of all this, his rudder broke three times.
He encountered fierce storms and had it not been for a rope firmly tied about his waist, he would not have been able to make it back into the boat after having been swept overboard several times.
He later told how, on those occasions he was able to get a little sleep, he dreamed of how it would be when he finally got to England. He would dream that he would just dock, and then go into town and rent a hotel room. He said he looked forward to eating a big meal and getting a good night’s sleep in a real bed. And then the next morning, he would contact the press and see if anyone was interested in doing a story on what he had just accomplished.
To his amazement, as he sailed in, there were hundreds of boats with their horns blasting, celebrating his great feat. And there were over 40,000 people standing on the docks waiting to welcome him to the end of his journey. He was an overnight hero, and his story quickly went around the world.
He admitted later that he could not have done this without the support and encouragement of his wife Virginia, who flew to England and was among the 40,000 who cheered for him. He said her constant love and encouragement was what enabled him to fulfill his dream.
The world needs more love and encouragement, wouldn’t you say? But no matter where we look, we don’t seem to find anybody who can actually do that for us. Maybe it is because we have been looking in the wrong places.
In reality, there is One who not only can, but yearns to love and encourage us to be all that we can be. That is the best news we will ever hear. And we are going to be talking about Him today. Of course, we know Him by the name of Jesus. The Son of the living God; the Savior of mankind.
’In those days, Caesar Augustus made a law. It required that a list be made of everyone in the whole Roman world. It was the first time a list was made of the people while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be listed.
’So Joseph went also. He went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea. That is where Bethlehem, the town of David, was. Joseph went there because he belonged to the family line of David. He went there with Mary to be listed. Mary was engaged to him. She was expecting a baby.
’While Joseph and Mary were there, the time came for the child to be born. She gave birth to her first baby. It was a boy. She wrapped him in large strips of cloth. Then she placed him in a manger. There was no room for them in the inn.’
God reached out to us from Heaven, giving us an opportunity to draw nearer to Him. But before He could help us, He had to do something first. He had to make Himself smaller for us so that we could grow larger in Him. And so, Jesus came to this world to become one of us so that we could become like Him.
Have you ever thought about how the birth of Jesus has impacted your life? Has the birth of Jesus had any kind of impact on your spouse – or, if you aren’t married yet, will it have any effect on your spouse? Does Jesus have any influence over how you do your job; how you relate to people on a daily basis; the places you go; the things you do?
I think what we will find is that those who really do become believe in Jesus enough to become subservient to His will, will be affected by Jesus in every single area of their lives. Those who only acknowledge Him, but refuse to let Him in their hearts, will not be influenced by Him in any area of their lives.