It begins with how we feel and react to the Lord. We see the response of the shepherds. They spread the news abroad about who had been born.
Luke 2:18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
Notice the difference. Mary pondered. The people who heard the shepherds were filled with wonder. We don’t know how many may have gone to the stable. Hearing the good news is a wonder. His name is called Wonderful. We must react more than with wonder. We must comprehend why he came. We must do more than stand back. We need to comprehend the deep work of salvation. See the meaning behind the immaculate conception. He became a little baby in a womb through the Holy Spirit. God was close to Mary. She carried him nine months and was still a virgin when Jesus was born. He had her genes, her DNA, but he was the child of God. He was our kinsman as well as God’s.
Many may have left it at that. We’re guilty of putting away Christmas like we do our decorations. Mary pondered—considered long—the meaning behind these things. We have what the townspeople didn’t have in the writings of the New Testament. All Mary had was what happened. The shepherds told what the angels said and how they found them. She kept this and pondered it. She didn’t let it go. This is keeping Christmas. It’s keeping the Lord. We should ponder daily about the Lord. He completely fulfilled the plan of salvation. The more we ponder on it, the stronger we get in faith.
We think things through with our mind. Everything Jesus did has great meaning and gives us the answers we need. Life is full of questions, and Jesus is the answer. He told the rich young ruler to sell all he had and come follow him. If he could have done that and been all right, we will be all right if the rug is pulled out from under us. Mary thought about all the things she saw and heard. She felt them in her innermost being. She felt Jesus as she carried him, as she birthed him, and as she held him in her arms. Long after the shepherds left the stable she pondered on it.
They lived in Egypt for a while. When they were on their way back to Nazareth I wonder if Mary wanted to stop by Bethlehem and see the stable. She still pondered it. While Jesus was on the cross she pondered it. Later, after Jesus went back to heaven, she was among those in the Upper Room. As long as she lived she pondered these things in her heart. That tells us to never forget Jesus. Keep him in our heart and mind. If we don’t, we’ll lose our way.
The nativity came to a conclusion but Jesus lives on and on. He’s not in the manger or on the cross or in the tomb. His target was our heart. Let’s keep him where he desires to be. He’ll get us through this year. Heaven will be perfect forever. Mary didn’t let it go. Let’s do the same. Meditate on him day and night.