There's a normalcy to paying taxes. The fact that Mary and Joseph had to go to Bethlehem to participate in a census for taxes is something that mankind can relate to. Arriving in a small town, finding no room and sleeping in less than ideal circumstances is another very human thing.
The idea that the salvation of the world wouldn't begin in courts, palaces or temples, but in a stable. That it would come to normal people with everyday jobs...carpenter, shepherds...seems an especially significant message.
God sent His son to a place where wealth, status, and impressive things we'd built were conspicuously absent. If you think about it, the place wasn't even clean. (As a mom, I shudder.)
I can't imagine a clearer message that God loves us as we are--without our pomp and circumstance. Without our attempts to impress, dress up, or make ourselves appear more holy.
Maybe that is why we love the Charlie Brown Christmas tree. Because it gets closer than all of our tinsel, wrapping and ribbon to who we really are. And the idea that someone could love a tree like that...even prefer it...touches us.
For all that I love the shiny parts of Christmas, if I truly look, it would appear that since Adam we've worked to design better and better fig leaves. God came to a place that couldn't afford them. And I believe there is significance to that.