Thursday, December 9
Our family lived for a number of years in Central Europe where there is a Catholic tradition and a great celebration of the Christ child in the Christmas season. In the Bohemian area of the Czech Republic, that Christ child is known as "The Little Infant of Prague." He is presented as a baby wearing regal, royal robes and on his head is a tall, golden crown. Even people there who are not "believers" venerate this infant and understand that, according to scripture, he came into the world as a King. When we taught English to Czech students using the scriptures as a text, the "Little Infant of Prague" gave us an opportunity to discuss with them the meaning of how God chose to come into the world as a King, but in the human form of a child.
The wise men understood this concept and asked Herod, "Where is he that is born King of the Jews?" The prophets understood this concept and Isaiah wrote that a holy infant would be born who would be called "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Mary, the mother, understood this concept. She who was chosen out of all the women who would ever be born throughout all time, would conceive a child of the Holy Spirit. She would become the new ark of the new covenant, prophesied by Jeremiah. She would carry the holy child of the new covenant within her body beneath her heart. He would be formed in the likeness of man and God. Her DNA would define his earthly body. His human likeness would resemble her - and she was surely beautiful.
So the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. God revealed himself to us in an earthly form that we could understand. We beheld his glory. The splendor of this leads us to ask the questions: Why would God love mankind, his creation, so much that he would leave the majesty of heaven and come into the world and take the form of a man? Why would he pay a debt of sin he did not owe? It was because he knew that you and I and all of the people of the world owed a debt of sin we could not pay. Knowing this, the response of the angels was "Glory to God in the Highest!" and realizing this, our response must be, in the words of the old carol,
Go tell it on the mountain, Over the hills and everywhere.
Go tell it on the mountain, That Jesus Christ is born!
- Phyllis Polly
Lord, thank you for everything you have blessed us with. Help us to keep humble hearts and to open our eyes to those in need. Be with us all on this day and help us to live our lives in a way that pleases you. Thank you for giving us all a promise of safety and worth. Amen.
- Betsy Sutton