v. 2 Joseph and Mary had to travel to Bethlehem for the census. The census was used for either aiding the military or collecting taxes. Since Rome was in charge it was probably against his better judgment to go on the trip, although he complied. There are many things we don't want to do because we think it is against our beliefs. If we give it to God, He can take care of it. The trip would have been slow and difficult for Mary who was pregnant. There is no mention of her complaining on the journey. I can guarantee that I would have been complaining daily! I let my circumstances dictate my emotions, which is one of my many areas that I need to work on. Just because we are being obedient doesn't mean that we won't go through some tough days. We are not guaranteed comfort or convenience. But we are promised that everything, even discomfort and inconvenience has meaning in God's plan. I think the Jews thought that Jesus would be born of a noble family. Don't limit God by our expectations.
v. 8 Shepherds were the low end of society yet an angel came to them to share the good news. Over and over in the bible God used what the world would see as useless or common to do great things. It seems that we haven't learned much when we look at someone and deem them less than us by what they look like or what they say. The greatest news in history and it came to the humble. Jesus comes to all those with a humble heart. He accepts you as you are. Which that took me a long time to really understand. v. 19 Maybe it really sunk in when strangers came to confirm what the angel had stated. What a wonderful experience it is to have a child so I can not imagine what Mary was feeling after giving birth to the King.