“The time came for the baby to be born, and Mary gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger” (Luke 2:6,7).
“The angel said to the shepherds, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy…. A Savior has be born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger’” (Luke 2:10-12).
A baby, an infant baby boy, born in a stable, announced by angels as a Savior, Christ the Lord. God chose the littlest and the least of humanity to reveal himself to us. He “made himself nothing” (Philippians 2:7), he set aside “the privileges of deity” (The Message) to become human.
There is magic in the diminutive. “When one is fond of anything one addresses it by diminutives….The reason is, that anything, however huge, that can be conceived of as complete, can be conceived of as small….We are not fond of ‘large’, we are fond of ‘small.’ For economy is far more romantic than extravagance…There is the feeling of cosmic cosiness.” (G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy)
This is how God came to us. He made himself vulnerable. He disarmed us by his defenselessness. The Incarnation of God coming in the flesh of a baby is the supreme manifestation of the law of the universe and the message of salvation. What kind of God: all-powerful, all-knowing, the Creator of all the ends of the universe, Judge of all, would make himself vulnerable to us in this way? Is this his understanding of Love and Compassion for us that he would reach out to us through human fragility?
Love came down at Christmas,
Love all lovely, Love Divine,
Love was born at Christmas,
Star and Angels gave the sign.
Worship we the Godhead,
Love Incarnate, Love Divine,
Worship we our Jesus,
But wherewith for sacred sign?
Love shall be our token,
Love shall be yours and love be mine,
Love to God and all men,
Love for plea and gift and sign.
May this Love of God seen in the infant Jesus enfold you this Christmas.