Saturday, December 25, 2010

How many gods would pour out their heart to romance a world that has torn all apart?

(Original photo)
 Are there any stories that you've heard a thousand times that you somehow discover have caverns of meaning you've yet to explore? For me, much of the bible is this way. I grumble to reread that cliché parts: the cross, Jonah and the whale, Adam and Eve, Noah's Ark, and especially the birth of Christ. Even people who don't believe in the bible know about that one, thanks to Charlie Brown's Christmas. Yet this year, when I heard that same ole story once again, sparks flew. The implications of the age old tale, the babe in the manger, the angels, and the shepherds echoes into our lives today. The baby changes everything. Maybe you recognized the story's greatness the first time you heard it, maybe you think the story was made up to help sell Christmas cards, but play along with me.

Just a little back story to the nativity scene: the world was separate from God. Because of sin. Because in that first Genesis story, people decided that God was holding out on them. Eve chose to take things into her own hands but then Adam rushed to rescue her from sin...oh He stood by and did nothing. He actually took part in disobeying God's only forbiddance. Since then the world was sick. It was rampant with the sin disease. People gave God the finger and did whatever they wanted or they straight ignored His existence. Death crept into the world and brought with it sorrow, pain, grief, anger, destruction. God didn't just sit back and watch this new, broken world. He gave them guidelines, that would keep them safe, and make their lives better. But people ignored those too. God made appearances, but He kept a distance because when something is pure, it cannot touch something impure or it too will become impure. It was painful to be apart from what you love, and God could not imagine His treasured creations spending eternity without Him. He had a rescue plan.

God decided to come to Earth. As fully man, and fully God. That way He could touch man's heart. Now, God could have made a grand entrance. He had thunder, lightning, earthquakes, volcanoes, tornadoes, chariots of fire, plagues of locust, kings and queens all at his disposal. Instead, God came in the quiet of the night. And the only sign that pointed to His arrival was a bright, beautiful star. Those who'd listened to God's messengers knew exactly what was happening. People had been talking about this for years. But who would have expected a young, scared couple gave birth to the God of the Universe, in the form of Jesus, God's son? The mighty being, left His throne in heaven where he'd never felt the cold, never seen a dark night, never had to sneeze, to come to disease-ridden Earth. He came as the most dependent of creatures: a baby. He had to be fed, He had to be protected, He pooped His pants. Did he come to the grandest places on Earth? Was he born in a palace? Or perhaps a Macy's parade. No. God had so much humility that His son was born in a stable. The place they keep farm animals. And who did God send to tell the news that His son had been born, that God had come to earth? A grand choir? A professional motivational speaker? The president? Nope. Nope. And nope. God sent angels to tell a group of grungy old Shepards. Shepards weren't exactly the cool kids of the time. In fact, they were looked down upon. They were poor, simple men of trade. Yet God chose these nobody specials to spread the greatest news the world would ever hear.

I bet Mary didn't know as she held her baby that He would grow up to live a perfect life, loving people while spreading the good news about relationship with God, and die to finally give people the power to be free of the bondage of sin. He would bridge the gap between God and man that had been created by sin. He would rescue the world. He would rescue me.

1 comment:

Uneventfully Wonderful said...

great post, chels. thanks for such a deep post to remind us what this season is all about.
my church actually sang a song like this on christmas eve. it is a great one.

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