4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. (TNIV)
This kind of reminds me of the time during my 20s during university in Ontario. I was coming back home for the summer. I decided to drive instead of fly. I also decided to drive through Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Michigan instead of going through northern Ontario. I remember being young and naive. I didn’t book ahead for a hotel room. I just drove till I got tired and then looked for a place to stay. I was sure I could find a motel with rooms available. So I drive by the Motel 6 and I see the sign: “No Vacancy”…next, Super 8 Motel: “No Vacancy”…next, EconoLodge: “No Vacancy”…Rodeway Inn: “No Vacancy”. It was getting really late. It was past midnight and I was getting very nervous. The motel night attendant tells me that all the hotels and motels in town are booked solid because of heavy travelling this time of year. She tells me some people end up sleeping in their cars through the night. So that’s what I decided to do. I had no choice. It was summer time and the temperatures stayed in their 20s through the night. It wasn’t the most comfortable sleep but at least I got some rest and started on my journey the next morning.
That night, I felt a little like Mary and Joseph. No place of physical comfort to lay my head and rest. I rested where I was, in my car and slept…a little frightened…a little uncertain of my safety. I had no bright lights to light my path… No angelic hosts to guide me, and I prayed that God would protect me.