Christmas Reflection

“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.”

Over the centuries writers have explored the mystery and paradox of the incarnation through the language of poetry. Consider this excerpt:

The white-hot beam of annunciation
fused heaven with earth,
his searing, sharply focused light
went out for a while,
eclipsed in amniotic gloom;
his cool immensity of splendor,
his universal grace,
small-folded in a warm, dim
female space—
the Word stern-sentenced to be
nine months’ dumb—
infinity walled in a womb,
until the next enormity—
the Mighty One, after submission
to a woman’s pains,
helpless on a barn’s bare floor
first-tasting bitter earth
(Luci Shaw, “Made Flesh,” naturalized American, twentieth century) [Gross, p 63-64]

Another reflection:

Christmas is a season of wonder. Christmas draws us into the spiritual life more profoundly. The incarnation is God’s great gift to us….God took on our poverty so that we might gain his riches.

Christmas is the enfleshment of God, the humiliation of the Most High and divine participation in all that is painful, ugly, frustrating, and limited. Divinity takes on humanity, to restore the image of God planted at creation but sullied by sin. Here is the great exchange Christmas ponders, that God became like us that we might become like God. God accepted death that the world might accept life. The Creator assumed temporality to redeem creation from futility. (Lawrence Stookey)

So we open ourselves anew to this gift. We say yes to the marvelous exchange by which we are changed. As he gave all of himself for us, so we give generously of ourselves for others. And in this giving, his and ours, we are spiritually enriched. [Gross, pg 65-66]

Both of these are from the devotional book Cindy and I are reading called LIVING THE CHRISTIAN YEAR, by Bobby Gross, IVP. (Bobby was in our wedding party and IV staff at Florida). In addition to the texts and reflections/questions for them, he has other background and introductory information for the different seasons such as the above.

May you be able to carve out time for reflection on the miracle of the Incarnation.


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