Luke 2:7 – And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
Have you ever noticed the bottom half of this scripture? The bible never says that there wasn’t room in the inn; it simply states there wasn’t room for them. Them = Mary and Joseph expecting a baby out of wedlock.
During the religious festivals that were going on, this inn-keeper chose to allow only certain customers to actually stay in the inn. Apparently, his door wasn’t open to those that looked like they had some issues.
In todays society the church is a refuge to many. This number includes wealthy and poor people alike. Sometimes people come through our church doors that have it all, they are just missing Jesus. Others come with all kinds of baggage. These people are literally burdened with issues that are serious and terminal. Our church must be open to them.
Them = pregnant teens, abusive parents, drug addicts, pharisees, terminally ill, the clinically depressed, the backslider, the fraudulent, and any other problem that activates the grace of God.
If your church decides to allow them in, get ready for criticism. Some of your regular customers may get uncomfortable. You may get a reputation in the community as being the church that has them. Your annual giving probably won’t see any increase. But, you will be doing the work you were called to do. And it may be that your church will see a personal manifestation of Jesus Christ.
No doubt there is a tension between having church for church people, or having church for those far from God. I think all followers of Christ should be fishers of men. Therefore, I would rather make Sunday about them (Them). Instead of preaching to make us happy, let’s pray that God would use us to help them take one more step closer to Jesus.
We have room for them – in our inn.