Perhaps most of you have never heard of a town called Parachute. It is a small town up in the Colorado’s Rocky. Its population is only 1100. I, too, had never heard of that town until my car broke down in Parachute about 40 years ago. I remember that I had to spend the night because the only mechanic in town could not fix my car and I would have to take it to Grand Junction, a larger city, on the next day. There’s no motel in that town so I ended up sleeping in this mechanic’s trailer in wintertime with no heater and no power.
But this town is not completely in the dark, though; in fact, quite the opposite, it is rather famous. You see, Parachute was the birthplace of Willard Libby, who happened to be the recipient of the 1960 Nobel Prize in chemistry. Compared to other big towns with millions of people but have never produced a single Nobel laureate, this tiny town of a thousand is quite something, isn’t it? All thanks to Libby.
Bethlehem is a small town in Israel today but 2000 years ago, it was a lot smaller. Its population was around 1000, just like this town, Parachute. And like Parachute, Bethlehem has also been made famous by a simple fact that it was the birthplace of Jesus. One person can make a difference; one visit can create a big change. The first Christmas in Bethlehem was rather quiet, attended only by a handful of shepherds; but today’s Christmas is celebrated by billions of people. All thanks to one person, Jesus the Son of God.
In the hands of God, we, too, can make a difference in the lives of others. Because of our visit, someone’s life is touched; because of our help, someone’s problem is solved; and because of our prayer, someone’s sickness is healed. God did not choose Rome to be the birthplace of Jesus; He chose Bethlehem. He always begins small.