Being a church-going brunette girl meant the same thing every December. I was always Mary come Christmas time. Okay, that’s a lie. When I was too young for lines I was a sheep and when I outgrew the role, I became the Inn keeper or Narrator. My husband claims he was always a shepherd, whacking the back of his sisters' heads with the staff. (As in he was never trusted with an important role.) Whose genius idea is it to give pre-pubescent boys large whacking sticks? Anyways, the Nativity story holds fond memories for us who have grown up in North American church culture.
Now while it has been many years since I’ve slipped on the blue housecoat over my scraggly child-like body and vanilla table cloth over my tangled hair, I am yet again playing the role of Mary. Not that I’m a virgin teenager, but I am with child. (I’m due shortly after Christmas with baby two.)
Sometimes we like to consider the social pressures and obstacles Mary faced during her expectancy. However playing the waiting game for both the holiday and my child, I wonder about her complaints. Like was Jesus really active in the womb? I mean, this is the LORD incarnate right? The inn was full. The whole town of Bethlehem would have been crowded. Was Joseph able to round up a midwife or two to help with delivery? And mercy! Travelling by donkey? Okay, it’s better than travelling by foot, but still. Ouch! Maybe that trip alone induced the labour. (I’m assuming this was their method of travel.) Did they pack expecting to deliver on the way or was it earlier than they thought? Did they pray to God asking, “In your timing but... please after we return home from the census”?
Imagine if Jesus’ birth was recorded by women? The details on that report would probably include what time of day the contractions started, how long she was labouring for, the nursing—all of it could have been unnecessarily descriptive. To some it may still be an interesting story, but those details pull from the main focus.
But it never hurts to wonder.
And to an unbelieving world we are provided with more than enough details to accept Christ. Prophecy fulfillment aside, Baby Jesus must have been incredibly cute for the shepherds to be spreading the news about a newborn. Yeah, God doesn’t make mistakes, but this was His own son. I’m curious; did He add a dimple or two?