Anyone else guilty of going all Joanna Gaines when you have the opportunity to decorate??? Swap shiplap for seventies textiles and white interiors for the color yellow, and I am all there!
When I found out I was pregnant with our first child my mind immediately went to nursery decorating! I scoured the internet for furnishings, spent hours handcrafting macrame buntings and pom-pom mobiles and made three separate trips to our home improvement store for paint samples before finally settling on this buttery shade of yellow.
Vintage wallpaper. Bamboo blinds. Monochromatic color scheme… I had so much fun bringing my HGTV dreams to life, but at the end of the day I knew that preparing a nursery was about so much more than the perfecting my feng shui. As I prepared a space in my home, I was preparing a space in my heart. The physical room was representative of the love that would fill it. As the wall art was hung and her little doll-sized clothes were washed, the child in my womb grew bigger and her due date on the calendar got ever closer.
I believe this innate desire to “nest” as they call it, comes from our Creator. We were created in His image, and something about these preparations imbues the Image of God.
Reading the beginning of the gospels accounts this week, I was struck by the realization that God made perfect preparations for the birth of His Son. At first glance it may have felt like this world wasn’t ready to receive the Savior… the hustle and bustle of the streets of Bethlehem, the crowded nativity, the lowly manger. But God had prepared all of history for this very moment. This was the time He had chosen. Thousands of years of prophecy and revelation pointed to this historic event, the moment when Jesus was born.
After 400 years of silence between the Old Testament and New, this was the perfect time in human history for the resounding message of Christ to echo through the world. The Roman Roads made the spread of the gospel possible and the well-known Greek language allowed God’s Word to be accessible to the masses. The perfect time indeed!
In not just one but three of the gospel accounts, we read the words of John the Baptist whom God had sent to prepare the way… “Prepare the Way for the Lord. Make straight paths for Him.” These words were taken from Isaiah’s prophecy (Isaiah 40:3), and they still hold meaning for us today.
When I read the gospel account of Jesus’ birth, I want those words to be true of my life. I don’t want to be like the innkeeper who has no room for Him. I want to be prepared for Him to enter in. I want to be prepared for the good works He has prepared in advance for me to do. And that doesn’t happen by accident. When I look at my life, there is only so much space to fill. My schedule is full and my heart is even fuller. So how do I keep from missing the opportunities and the good works God has planned for me? I need to make room.
Questions to make room:
- What things are distracting me from being focused on Him?
- What crowds my thoughts when I try to have quiet time?
- What keeps me from sitting down and opening my Bible?
We don’t have to clean up our act or perfect ourselves in order for Him to come. We just need to create the space, and He will fill it with beautiful things.