I have used the phrase "Christmas miracle" to describe countless things the past few weeks: a work deadline being moved back (love when that happens), me moving from the 3-pound weights to the 5-pound weights in my workout class (power moves), and my husband getting an inquiry into the car he just listed on Facebook Marketplace. However, the inquiry ended up being, "Want to trade for a ski boat?" We actually may need a Christmas miracle to sell this vehicle.
This phrase is something that many of us, myself included, take lightly. It's also something that those who grew up in the church can become numb to. For all of us struggling to believe in miracles this Christmas, let's refresh ourselves on that first Christmas miracle.
And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
If you have ever taken Human A&P, ridden a public school bus, or had access to that terrifying Care and Keeping of You American Girl book growing up, you know that this is not how the story goes. A virgin does not give birth to a son. But making a way out of no way is exactly what God does. He brought life to a place where it never should have existed, and years later, He is still doing that.
It can be easy to forget this as we unwrap another chocolate in our Advent calendars and cross more gifts off our long shopping lists. We may recall the crazy miracles that occurred 2,000 years ago, but we never imagine miracles could be possible today. Note: this is not saying you will be raised from the dead like Lazarus or that your glass of water will turn into good wine. I just think it’s easy to lose hope and not even bother to pray for what we doubt will ever be answered, because I have been there all year long.
The truth is that God is still miraculously filling voids, even though we hesitate to believe it. He brings joy when we don’t expect it. He lifts us from the pit of despair. He offers undeserved forgiveness. He extends peace amidst chaos and hope amidst emptiness. He fills voids through miracles and answered prayers every single day.
Advent emphasizes that God is always at work, even as we wait for a miracle. He filled a void for Abraham and Sarah, and He did the same thing for Elizabeth and Zechariah. He filled a void for the shepherds and the Magi. He filled a void for all the sinners in Jesus’s family line, bringing redemption to a family tree so broken. And to a world so void and fallen, so desperate for a Savior, God so miraculously gave us His Son.
I don’t know what prayer you’ve stopped praying. I don’t know how empty you feel today. I don’t know how your circumstances have robbed you of your hope and your joy this season.
But I do know that the God who gave us Isaac and John the Baptist and Jesus Christ in wombs that never should have carried them is the same God in control today. The God who gave us a Savior out of a sinful and broken family tree is the same God who provides today. The God who has pulled me and countless others out of the pit of despair is the same God who sent us a Redeemer.
And the God who filled our greatest void by giving us Jesus is the same God at work right here and right now. For all of us needing a miracle this Christmas, whether it's for a car to sell, a doctor to give us some good news, a little light in the darkness, or a family gathering to feel less like Christmas Vacation, this is some really good news.