At last! The long awaited day has arrived! MERRY CHRISTMAS!
The birth of Christ never ceases to amaze me. If I truly stop to contemplate the scene, I choke up. You can imagine that this time of year can be a bit soggy in my household.
I think about each member of the Holy Family--their bravery, their commitment, their total abandonment to God inspite of real and life-threatening danger-- all so humbly portrayed as such a peaceful event. If only we had a glimpse of what was happening behind the scenes that first Christmas-- -- what it was like from heaven’s view point...or better yet, let’s start with hell’s.
This tiny Baby’s entry into the fabric of our reality turned the world upside down… or I should say--right side up again. Satan, having been kicked out of heaven and running willy-nilly [having a real heyday for thousands of years] was now dangling by a thread --hanging off the edge of the universe due to this most quiet and yet explosive event. If only we could see. If only we could pull back the curtain on time and space and see into eternity the ripple effect that this minuscule pebble of an event made in the ocean of all mankind. Christ set off a tsunami of events that is still rocking the cosmos. Nothing will ever be the same again.
And yet...what I hold here in my hand, this ornament portraying the incident, pressed into plastic, depicts an event so meekly presented that it is easy to pass over, so distracted am I by the “fancier” ornaments that are bejeweled and bedazzled, ones that are more delightful to my entertainment-saturated vision. And yet-- this was and is the greatest event of all time, on earth as well as in heaven.
Imagine the birth of Jesus from God’s point of view, it was nothing short of the most glorious and yet gut-wrenching unfolding in all of history. God, having no boundaries, not being tied to earth’s mechanisms of present, of location, or circumstances, knew the end of the story as well as its very humble beginning. He foreknew that His Son was to be sent for the sole purpose of dying. He knew that the tiny Atom Bomb of Love would explode on this earth and nothing living could or would escape the consequences.
And yet, what we celebrate today, shown here in my hand, looks so small, brown and ordinary. I am holding a representation of the Key to the Universe, the Guarantee of our eternal life, the Incarnate Word, the devil’s end, Life’s only Hope...here, in the palm of my hand. If this little plastic piece were infused with even a molecule of the truth it represents, it should weigh ten billion pounds from the measure of its glory. I should not be able to lift it. It should be a raging fire of holiness-- so hot I could not touch it. It should be so brightly filled with Hope, Faith and Love that I am blinded when I look upon it. I should need to cover my ears as I hold it to dim the excruciatingly loud trumpet’s blast and lion’s roar as all of mankind shouts together GLORY HALLELUJAH The KING is BORN! Every knee should be bending and I should be prostrate as I even think of such holy and sacred events.
But here He is. Once again made into man-sized “manageability.” If I were to really see, even for a moment, perhaps I would no longer be fit for this world, or maybe I would be like the Shepherds, so moved by their glimpse of the heavenly realities that graced the earth’s sky that night and ushered in a new Kingdom that all they wanted to do was run to gaze upon Him and tell everyone they knew the Great and truly unbelievable news.
God has come to earth.
“‘I AM the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End...I, Jesus have sent my Angel to testify to these things for you among the Churches. I am the Root and Origin of David, the Bright Morning Star...Even now I am approaching quickly.’ Amen. Come Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.” Revelation 22: 13, 16, 20-21
Oh Lord! Have mercy on me a sinner! How can I dare approach You, most Holy and precious God, and yet You came to us so humbly-- as a baby in a MANGER so that all could have confidence enough to come close to You! Please give me that confidence today and the ability to look in reverence and awe at what an amazing event Your coming to earth was. Like a shooting star, You came and set the world ablaze. Let me be in awe of You again and again. Let the fact that You are HERE, NOW never leave me complacent or unfocused. Be my Polaris...be my Guide, be my Light and my Life and grant me the grace to be “Star-struck” and never recover from the illuminating effects of You. Happy Birthday Baby Jesus! Thank You for coming to save me and all mankind! Blessings and Honor and Praises belong to You! Let the words, ‘Glory to God in the Highest and on earth peace to people of good will!’ be on my lips this day and always.
I ask this in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.