“And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
-Luke 1:31-33 ESV
This Christmas is a unique one for me. Though normally celebrated with cheer, enthusiasm, and a unnaturally high dose of Christmas spirit, this Christmas marks one of an even deeper joy. It is my first Christmas as a mother.
My son, now 4 months old, has no idea what is happening, entranced by the lamp light as much as any Christmas light. He is full of toothless smiles, flailing arms, and buckets of drool. His desire to stand is unending and his frustration at his own helplessness apparent as he grunts and cries as he fails to sit up on his own.
A helpless babe.
My God, the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth, our Sovereign King was one of these. Chose to be one of these. A completely innocent, completely dependent, completely incapable baby. A drooling, crying, spit-up machine.
“Have this in mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Phillipians 2:5-8)
Christ humbled himself….the understatement of a lifetime.
God, the most powerful, sovereign, magnificent king of all of eternity, set aside this power to be born as a human. A baby human. For us. (Hebrews 2:17-18)
I never understood the magnitude of this sacrifice until now, now that I am raising a son of my own. Now I am overwhelmed. I cannot stop reflecting on this choice, this ultimate act of humility, the surrendering of justified divine attributes to take on the journey of humanity from its helpless beginnings.
O how He must love us.
O how He must love us indeed.
It was not necessary that He do this for us. He could have just wiped out the world and started over again, with a creation that had less free will who honored and worshipped Him the way that He deserved. But instead of sacrificing us, He sacrificed Himself.
That is why we celebrate Christmas. Why we celebrate His birth as gratefully as His resurrection.
As the angel proclaimed to the shepherds in the field that night, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11), may we also proclaim what He has done for us, and rejoice in a God who deserves it.
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased.” (Luke 2:15)