In the middle of the mall, an 18 month old girl is sitting on the floor alone and crying for her mother. People are staring and wanting to help, but most tell themselves; "you never know in our society today..." and so they keep passing her by. The child's mother is apparently no where in sight. You go over to the baby and try to pick her up, but she tries to get away and just cries harder and louder, "MOMMY!!!" So, you try again; you pick her up and say, "It's ok little girl, I'm offering to you the idea of motherhood."
How well do you think that's going to work?!?
Yeah, probably not. She doesn't want the idea of a mother, she wants the real thing!!! That's the way it is with us humans...we are personal beings, we want personal responses.
The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us.~John 1:14
What was God thinking when He sent His Son to live with us? Was He frustrated with how He'd failed to get us to behave? Did the perfect Law fail? Was turning The Word into flesh a "last-ditch effort"?
We know that from the beginning; this was ultimately God's plan. First to establish His righteousness and THEN to establish our need for His remedy.
Have you ever received a gift that was sooo not something you wanted or it was just plain ol' impersonal? When I was in my early teens, I used to collect angel figurines. I just thought they were really pretty and I was fascinated by angels. But after I turned 16, I kind of lost interest in collecting them and never asked for them anymore. I became more interested in other things. But my parents would still give me angel figurines for presents at my birthday and Christmas. So, when I turned 18, I kindly reminded them that I didn't collect them anymore and that the ones I had were currently stored in their closet (with their permission.) But...the angel figurines kept coming. When I married Daniel (about 4 years later) and we moved into our apartment, my mother brought over some of my "old stuff" from their house, and guess what was in one huge box...my angel figurines! I asked her if she wanted any of them, because the rest were going to go to Goodwill that afternoon. And she said, "You mean you don't like angels anymore?!?"
How many times did I need to send them that memo?!? Did they not know me at all??? (that's a whole other story...lol) In my Bible study this morning I read:
"When you read your Bible, does it make a difference that the Word is not just telling you what to do, but offering to re-create the fundamental nature of your spirit? When you worship God, is it better to do so with a transformed heart than with a slavish obedience to an unknown deity? Does it matter to you that instead of simply being religious as best you can, you relate to a Person -a Person who lived in the same kind of body you have and yet is still powerful and wise enough to be your God? [Someone who knows you inside out and still loves you anyway?] Are you glad your faith is this...well, personal?"
And yet, some people aren't. They'd prefer a God who leaves them alone until He's requested to show up. Sometimes, it's a little too personal, we like to have our "personal space" emotionally: with other people and with God. It can be awkward and uncomfortable; this being personal stuff. But we are flesh, and deep down; we want to relate and connect with flesh. God knew that, so Jesus came to dwell; to be Emmanuel.
"Christ became what we are that He might make us what He is." ~Athanasius of Alexandria
Merry Christmas, everyone!