The Christmas story seems to be a strange converging of participants. You have a young soon-to-be-married couple, a heavenly host of angels, some shepherds, and some religious astrologers from a foreign land in the East, all converging to meet a little bundle of flesh who was the Son of God. It is a strange story.
Yet the great convergence of Christmas is not so much who gathered by the manger, but what would be achieved by the baby in the manger. For thousands of years the people of Israel had been given promise after promise. Ever since the human heart was fatally corrupted in the Garden of Eden, God had been promising to fulfil His plans to fix the mess we had created.
So this bundle of human flesh was fully the Son of God, the promised Deliverer, come to transform human hearts from death to life, from disobedience to delighted obedience, to forgive sins, to restore the missing Spirit from within and to unite humanity with God in heartfelt unity. The promised New Covenant was here, and he was lying in a manger! The heart of Christmas is not some quaint picture of peaceful gatherings, it is the tiny beating heart that came to rescue ours and make all things new!