Mothers for Prodigals

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Our Gift of Christmas

He’s a baby, small and helpless, vulnerable and dependent on his parents. Not able to walk, talk, or use his hands effectively, his cries signal his needs. They lovingly feed him, change his diapers, bathe him, dress him, put him to sleep, watch over him, and protect him. Can you imagine that tiny baby as Jesus Christ?

He gave up His power, His strength, and His authority to dwell on earth with the people He created. He allowed Himself to be born as a baby, taken care of by earthly parents. He grew up, learning from those in authority. He lived out His mission on earth to teach us how to live out our mission on earth. He introduced a heavenly perspective to those that listened to His teachings. He taught His followers how to die to themselves as He died for them. Can you imagine the God of heaven and earth going to such extremes?

God our Heavenly Father loved us so much that He gave us His only Son (John 3:16). He was born as a baby to live among us, therefore He would be called Immanuel, which means “God with us” (Matthew 1:23). As an adult, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ humbled Himself even more as He gave Himself over to death, saving those who would believe in Him as Savior. The second chapter of Philippians describes the humility of Jesus Christ. 

Though he was in the form of God,
        he did not consider being equal with God something to exploit.

But he emptied himself
        by taking the form of a slave
        and by becoming like human beings.
When he found himself in the form of a human,

        he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death,
        even death on a cross.

Therefore, God highly honored him
        and gave him a name above all names,

    so that at the name of Jesus everyone
        in heaven, on earth, and under the earth might bow

        and every tongue confess that
            Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
  Philippians 2:6-11 CEB (Common English Bible)

Thank you, God, for loving us so much that you would live on earth among your people, exemplifying for us the righteous life. Thank you, Jesus Christ, for your death and resurrection, enabling us to live eternally with you. Thank you for your gift of Christmas. Amen.

I wrote the following poem many years ago after reflecting on God's gift of Christmas, our Savior Jesus Christ.

The Gift of Christmas

What a glorious time of year
When we celebrate the birth
Of a God who loved us so
That He came to live on earth.

Such a wondrous occasion
A holiday so dear,
It may be cold outside
Yet we’re warm because God’s near.

Some will have misgivings,
While others dread the season. 
In this day of automation
Do we have good reason?

Think of Mary, mother of Jesus,
Traveling o’er rocky terrain
On a donkey, big with child, 
I wonder—would she complain?

The Bible explains situations
Mary pondered in her heart.
If hearts were home for Jesus, 
Humans could make a new start.

So let Christ in this Christmas,
He’ll fill your soul with joy.
Together let’s give thanks to God
For sending the Savior boy!

DDC ’89

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