Away in a hotel room…

We were in church the other day, singing Away in a Manger, when my youngest son had a surprising question.

“Daddy,” he whispered. “What if Jesus wasn’t born in a manger?”

I leaned close to hear him better. “What?”

“What if one of the inns had had a room?”

I thought about it for a second. “The song sure would be different.” I said, laughing.

After church, as we walked to the car, I started to sing. “Away in Bob’s hotel…”

He laughed, and he and his brother joined in, singing “a crib for a bed.”

“The little lord Jesus lay down his sweet head.” We sang together.

“Sleeping in room four oh eigh-eight,” my oldest sang.

And then it just got silly, with the wise men waiting politely outside the hotel room, and shepherds driving their flocks through town to see Him.

Thinking about it, though, the descendants of those innkeepers must be pretty frustrated. I mean, imagine if one of them had said “sure, come on in.” Not only would the place have been mentioned in the bible, but it would be in a beloved Christmas song.

Talk about great publicity!

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