Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Messiah in the manger...

What’s not to love about a baby, especially a newborn? Tiny cheeks as soft as rose pedals, those little squeaks and smacking noises they make, and then there’s that lovely moment when you lay them on your chest and they nuzzle in close as wisps of hair lightly brush your chin. Where your skin touches theirs a magical place opens up where love dwells and peace reigns.
And just think, Mary, held her newborn in such a way.
She was truly the most blessed among women. Actually, she was the most blessed among anyone. She was chosen by God to give birth to, nurture, and teach the Son of God. And, the good man, Joseph? God entrusted him to raise and protect the Messiah in the manger.
The night of His birth angels sang as they filled the night sky with brilliance and praise. And as the shepherds kneeled in the hay and gazed upon this newborn, did they know they were looking into the wrinkled face of God?
It’s Christmas. It is the time that the world has chosen to celebrate the birth of the Christ-child. Of course, we don’t really know the exact date of his birth. Does it matter? Where I attend church, Jesus, the babe, the rabbi, the preacher, the Savior, the Risen Christ is celebrated all year long. It’s why we gather. It’s why we remember Him in weekly communion. But it is comforting to know that there is a special season where the Son of God can be remembered openly by so many and with such joy.
The baby. The Son of God. He came. He walked among us. He taught. He challenged hearts. He ruffled feathers. He loved. He wept. He raised the dead. He held the children. He walked on water. He reprimanded the sea. He gave sight to the blind. He cleansed the leper. He loved the sinner. He loved fishermen, tent makers, doctors, and tax collectors. He loved Mary. He loved Susanna. He loved Martha. He loved Joanna. He enjoyed a good fish dinner. He washed feet. He prayed. He bowed. He replaced an ear. He was beaten. He carried a cross. He was spit on. He took care of His mother. He forgave. He cried out. He died, but not for long. He resurrected. He walked through walls. He cooked lunch for His friends. He commissioned. And finally, He went home.
But, on that starry night, all his mama knew for sure was that He was the most beautiful baby in the world. Everything else could wait.
In this Christmas season, I wish for you, dear friends, a moment of quiet, a starry night, and the distant singing of angels echoing off the breeze.
 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

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