This picture really brings to my mind the humble place where Jesus was born. I am a mom, and quite the wimp about pain, and the thought of childbirth in a tiny barn such as this–I could never do it! It makes me realize that Mary’s gift was not a one-time thing. When she said “yes” to God, she said “yes” not only to carrying and giving birth to baby Jesus, but to all those other trials, joys, heartaches, and physical hardships that she experienced throughout her whole life. All of us do this who make a solemn vow; we can never anticipate where life will bring us and what good and bad things will happen. The Blessed Mother has set the example for us; she underwent the trials of giving birth in a stable, relocating to Egypt and back with a young child, right up to watching her Son give his life on the Cross. She stood by her promise to God. This Christmas may God grant us all the strength and grace to stand by the promises we have made in our lives, and to keep the Faith no matter how discouraged we may become.
Merry Christmas to all!
H/T to Franciscan Cards for this beautiful picture.