I will never forget my first Christmas as a mother. It was full of the usual poignant moments, the handmade Christmas dress, the "First Christmas" ornament. But it was the most ordinary task in the middle of all that celebration that became the greatest memory, because in the middle of it, I was so profoundly struck by what that First First Christmas was.
Of all the elements and activities of the season, my epiphany came while I was changing my baby's diaper.
Wiping her little bottom, it hit me like lightening what it really meant when Christ came as a baby.
Not as a shiny, giant, glowing God who is instantly feared for His power.
Not as a grown man who one day showed up in town, offering parables, miracles and grace.
Not as a verbal child, able to make himself understood.
He came as a baby. A human baby, the most helpless creature on earth.
The Creator of this...
the Provider of this...
came as a baby who had to cry for food...
a baby who couldn't control his own body and soiled his diapers, sitting in it until someone noticed and could take time to change him.
He chose humility on an unimaginable scale so that He could not only be my sacrifice, but understand my daily struggles, great and small. To know what it was to be a puny human.
That's love. A love so far beyond anything language could explain that it required such abject humility and sacrifice to express it.
A love for me. A love for you. Love given despite His knowing what we would be and how little we would deserve it.
So as you purchase and wrap the Christmas gifts for those you love, and as you open their gifts to you in turn, I hope each piece of tape and ripped paper reminds you of that First Christmas gift: a love for you so wide and broad and high and deep, it can barely be comprehended.
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