As the old hymn puts it, away in a manger, no crib for his bed, the little lord Jesus lay down his sweet head. Sounds like a lowly beginning for one who would be called, Lord.
Of course, this all happened after Mary and Joseph had walked 90 miles from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Mary, in her ninth month of pregnancy, no less.
We wonder. What does this narrative tell us? That divinity is born into humble beginnings? That life can be difficult? That there’s not always room in the inn so we have to make due? Sure, perhaps these lessons are contained in the story.
Yet, there’s another kind of stunning truth being revealed. Right in the midst of it all, love is born. Right there in the nitty gritty bustle of people going to and fro, trying to get themselves registered, find a place to stay, grab a bite to eat, just get along. Right there, in the busyness of life, the anointed one appears.
Love doesn’t evolve,
Love is always disclosed in its fullness.
Love is suddenly realized,
Having been present
Since the dawn of creation,
Yet hidden from the ages
In God who creates all things.
Love comes into a world where it is bound to die
For the sake of revealing itself to every eye.
Resting on a bed of hay.
Sweet carols of the angels resounding.
Pure hope opens its eye to the wonders of this world.
Faith woven in the breasts of a mother,
Suckling the child, surrendered.
A father’s dreams tainted by tears,
Knowing what struggles must inevitably come.
Yet history is made this night.
Humanity’s rejection of the Divine Embrace
The rest is merely details.
Love is born.