The Way of the Manger

Heaven held a vacancy but the inn did not.

However, Bette Midler still sings God is watching us from a distance.

God's two thousand year old descent into His ancient world guarantees His presence in this modern world too.

A vacancy in heaven and a babe-filled manger on earth explains God's new presence for:

Christmas is omnipotence wrapped in the bonds of my own fragile humanity.# 

The enormity of Heaven's loss (formulated in eternity) defies my imagination and still eludes the world it is offered to. 

Heaven's frail new-born slept captive in a humble animal food receptacle, but is now imprisoned by a fullsome, red nonsense figure chuckling jolly ho-ho's.

Yet, in this yuletide celebration of an empty and self-giving Heaven I too have unwittingly transmuted the Divine generosity into a festival for me. Too readily I ignore its purpose while still priming myself for the next even wilder revelry - New Year.

He made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. (Philippians 2:7)

Universally clothed in this annual festival of goodwill and grace are some of Heaven's unseen abilities:

  • to give selflessly 
  • to reach through the very darkness of space into the equally deep darkness of men's lives
  • to pour light and love upon earth and
  • to stay close.

This vacancy of heaven annually snaps at my attention, but too often escapes my times.

So easily in this frenetic season omnipotence wrapped in the bonds of my own fragile humanity flees my family and misses my senses.

The manger in Bethlehem, this insignificant landing pad of God on earth shouts -- seek the simple and be sure to honor the humble.

Since then, that only Christmas descent to earth has:

  • irrevocably reversed the future of frail humanity,
  • irrevocably refocussed a troubled present to a peace-filled future and
  • so sadly eluded almost all.

Omnipotence wrapped in the bonds of my own fragile humanity sought me out, it has never desired to elude me.

Christmas means God is no longer watching me from a distance but gazing up to me from a manger.

Today's Soul Snippet:

"Jesus is a friend, not only in season, but at all seasons and at the most unseasonable times." ~ A.B.Simpson

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# Inspiration for today's SoulSnack came from the italics penned by the late Brennan Manning