I randomly dipped and draped the small twinkle lights on the mantle. When I reached the three hurricanes depicting the birth of Christ, I haphazardly pressed the glowing orbs down into each frosted tube. Then, I stood back, and with amazement, I excitedly noted where one particular tiny lamp landed -- right above the head of the baby Jesus!
Chance? Irony? Miraculous?
To me there are many ironies regarding the birth of our Savior.
John 1:1-3 states, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God."
Does it not confound you the Word came into the world with no words. The tiny infant couldn't speak a word. The only audible sound was His cry which came to shatter the silent night. The world had heard nothing, literally, from God for 400 years and here a shrill cry was our Savior's triumphant trumpet blast as He entered into our dark world.
How many times do I come to Jesus with no words? The only thing which bubbles up from within my broken soul are cries...no groans to which the Holy Spirit gives audible sound. Perhaps this is why Jesus hears and understands the cries of my heart so completely? He draws near when I cry.
This tiny babe probably kicked his infant feet, yet he could take no steps. Little did we know, one day, we would hear The Word behind us whispering,"This is the way. Walk in it." (Isaiah 30:21). How could the world have known, when it looked upon this tiny, helpless babe, He would walk on water to reach out His righteous right hand to keep us from sinking and drowning in our doubt and despair?
The angel came to Mary, and along with telling her not to be afraid, she was instructed to name the immaculate-conception-become-human, Jesus. How could we know one day all our knees would bow and He would be called the words Isaiah prophesied hundreds of years before His birth -- "And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6)
Prince of Peace
When the light of the world was born, Mary made a bed for Him in a manger -- a feeding trough for the lowest of the animals. How ironic the One who came that none would die, made his first bed in such a lowly state.
Mary wrapped Him in swaddling cloths. Before a Jewish feast, the firstborn male lamb -- the one without blemish would be chosen to be the atoning sacrifice. In order to keep him still before his time of sacrifice, the shepherds would wrap the wriggling lamb in swaddling cloths to keep him calm until his blood would be spilled for the cleansing of mans' sins.
Jesus was the helpless lamb -- swaddled in cloths until the time would come He'd lay down His life, on the rugged timbers, to clear our pathway to heaven once and for all.
God could have left us to our own sinful devices, but He gave His only begotten Son so that whoever believes in Him woud not perish, but have eternal life. (John 3:16)
Jesus is Immanuel -- God with us. He came to shatter the silent night. He came so we would never again have to live in darkness.
Do you know Him? Have you reached the end of yourself? Thank Jesus for the gift of grace He came to give you, personally. Ask Him to forgive your sins -- He will. Invite Him in to be Lord of your life. Lay down your life and pick up your cross and follow Him. Pray this now and then walk in freedom. If Jesus is already Lord of your life, invite Him in, anew, and embrace the beautiful ironies He brings to the world.
Be blessed this Christmas...we know how the story ends...take hope and be filled with joy and expectation...we're almost home...
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