With the lowering of the alert level on Covid-19 cases, people have begun to travel again, and many have decided to go back to their hometowns to celebrate Christmas and New Year.
In the first Christmas story, we can read in Luke 2 that Ceasar August issued a decree for the census of the entire Roman Empire. This was the reason why Joseph and Mary traveled back to their hometown of Bethlehem.
What can we learn from this travel?
First, home should be a place of refuge.
It is very interesting to note that Jesus was born in a manger because there was no room in the inn. There was no prophecy of the Messiah being born in a manger. The prophecy in Micah only foretold that the Messiah will be born in Bethlehem.
It is sad to see that no family members of Joseph and Mary opened their homes for them. If this was their hometown, then for sure they still have a family in the area. Elizabeth, for example, opened Mary her home as a place of refuge when she was in her early stage of pregnancy.
Another thought is that their family members got the news that Mary was pregnant not by Joseph but by another man. Their family members might not want to be part of the scandal.
So, in this Christmas season, let us remember to make our homes a place of refuge for our family members. They may have problems that they face, and they need all the help that they can get.
Second, do not forget your roots.
The Bible is a great exhibit that testifies how meticulous the Jews were with their family history. For example, you can read in Matthew 1 the ancestors of Jesus Christ.
If Joseph and Mary did not know their roots, they would not have traveled to Bethlehem. Jesus was then told the story of His lineage as all Jewish children were taught before.
It is sad to note that the Romans burned all the records of the ancestry of Jews. It is a fact that Israelis nowadays do not know anymore in which tribe they belong. This was a deliberate sabotage in the part of the Romans during New Testament times.
So, do not forget to ask your parents or grandparents your ancestry and value the legacy of your family. If you have a negative family legacy, then it is time for you to start a new one and establish new roots for the next generation.
Rev. Francis Neil G. Jalando-on