Dear Members and Friends:
We’ve seen the pictures of God of “God the Creator” painted by Michelangelo showing God reaching out to Adam—touching but not quite. There God is portrayed as an elderly man with a full head of white hair and an equally bushy beard. Sometimes this elderly God is shown as angry and judge-mental. On further thought, we consider God alive in Jesus and see him with a lamb in his arms, or standing on the prow of a boat calming the sea. He is often pictured healing the sick, teaching the crowds, in anguish on the cross. Sometimes we see him with an intense look. Yes, lots of pictures that draw us into the Holy, inviting us to encounter the presence of God.
What I like about Christmas is that we are invited to see God as “none of the above” even though many of the above I rather like. At Christmas, we are invited to see God as a newborn child. This invites us to think about God and God’s nature differently, and to experience God in a fresh new way.
Our arms reach out wanting to hold and embrace. Some of us joyfully reach with hands full of experience, ready to make those child friendly faces along with “oohing” noises. Others of us reach out clumsily as we worry “How am I to hold this fragile body without hurting it?” while being filled awe and feeling ever so honored.
This season, we reach out with anticipation for the “Christ”mas baby. This is the face of God. This is God we are holding in our arms. And that cry? That’s God speaking.
Come with me this Christmas as we claim the child born in a stable and laid in a manger. He is the one called, “Emanuel” or “God with us.” Come, ready not to be a bystander but one with arms outstretched, reaching out, and words on our lips, “Here, let me.” We fold the child into our bosom, as we murmur words of love and tenderness. Beauty.
We are anticipating, ready…waiting…”Come, Lord Jesus.”
Peace, Love, and Joy;