Most Wonderful Time?

As I write this, Christmas is a little over a week away. That’s getting a little close and there’s so much left to do. Got all the gifts yet? baked the cookies? sent out all the cards? No? Slacker.

Parties are fun and you love your friends, but you know if you walk out that front door one more time you will curl up in a ball, rock back and forth and mumble incoherently for the rest of the season. But wait! Hang in there! Before you go all catatonic, don’t forget about the kids’ school holiday extravaganza. Oh no, the teachers’ gifts, ack! Buy, buy, buy! Sale, sale, sale! Do everything exactly right. You’re almost there. You can do it. Don’t let anyone down—especially the children. For all that’s holy and good, not the children! Fill up every second with activity, because… well, Christmas!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!! Yay! Can’t you feel it?

From one slacker to another, while others are throwing punches over towels at [BigStoreMart] and underwear at [Sexy Lingerie Store], why don’t you sit for a minute, get some hot cocoa, or wine if you prefer, and let yourself think upon something…

God, creator of the universe and all that exists, became a little, vulnerable, all human, flesh and blood baby. He left the amazing magnificence of heaven and was born and put in a feeding trough. Born to a mom and dad who likely had some fear and anxieties about having a baby for the first time, but with the added responsibility of raising the Son of God. No pressure Mary and Joseph, but all of humanity’s salvation is on the line.

While entrusting his life to imperfect parents, he was taught to talk and stand and walk and eat and carpenter. The one through whom and by whom all things were made, had to learn everything he did. Step-by-step, just like the rest of us.

Because he limited himself to being human, he felt pain, he got tired, he laughed, he cried, he ate, he was hungry, he knew loneliness, he expressed anger and joy. He experienced the harshness and cruelty of this world, but also enjoyed friendship and love. He learned compassion, he encouraged, he rebuked, he challenged, he healed. He died a painful death.

Thirty-three years seems like a short life to us, but I wonder if, at times, it seemed like an eternity to him to be here? Why would he give up so much to become so vulnerable? so human? Why endure so much pain from his own creation? Why?

Well, because… us.

God loves us so much that he lowered himself to become one of us. He experienced our world as one of us to provide a way for us to know him, to touch him, to see him, to be close to him. When we can’t believe the Father’s love for us, all we need to do is look at Jesus to see it—Jesus is the human expression of God’s heart for us.

Now, go enjoy Christmas.

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