Happy Birth Day

sadtreeSomething about Christmas makes the holes in your life feel – well, hole-ier.

The business of busyness. The clamour of tills and expectations. The feeling that you’re just one mince pie/box set/stocking filler from enjoying the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.

The family nativities and the new babies.

Will sprouts and turkey fill the hole of childlessness? No they will not.


This Sunday at church we were looking at Luke chapter 1.  I read the heading:

A Childless Couple Conceives

and my stomach sank.

I was hoping for shepherds.

I don’t want to hear about miracles.

I want a baby for ME; not someone else.

I want a God who speaks into sadness as well as sparkle.

Something in me wants to close the Bible. I anticipate proud Hello!-style parents. Soft-lit birthing pools.  Crowds, cheering a new royal birth.

But I keep reading.

And here’s what I see:

A couple, fleeing for their lives.

A people, weeping and wailing for the babies they’ve lost.

A child born to a world of barrenness and brokenness. Laid in a stinking manger – to take our dirt on Himself.

The greatest gift God gives us this Christmas is a baby.  Not just for me –  but for the whole world.


2 thoughts on “Happy Birth Day

  1. I felt that too, last Sunday, sitting in church, struggling to life my eyes from my own grief, pricked by the constant talk of babies to the glory and the hope.
    I do take comfort from all the Bible stories of childless women and impossible babies. Not because I think that’s in any way a promise that God will do that for everyone, but because it shows me how much God understands and cares about the pain of childlessness. He may not give me what I want, but he does know that it hurts and he does care.

  2. Absolutely – it’s not the promise you will have babies, so much as the God who cares about the pain of not having them.

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