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Archive for December 24th, 2019

It is as if infancy were the whole of incarnation by Luci Shaw

The waiting of advent is coming to an end, as we celebrate the new born king.

Tonight the stories of a manger, and angels, and shepherds, of a stable, and virgin mom and a donkey come to the part where the birth of the babe seems to be the culmination, the end of the story …

yet, the birth of the baby Jesus is only the beginning of the greatest story ever told.

I love this poem, by Luci Shaw, how she reminds us

It is as if infancy were the whole of incarnation
(by Luci Shaw)

One time of the year
the new-born child
is everywhere,
planted in madonnas’ arms
hay mows, stables,
in palaces or farms,
or quaintly, under snowed gables,
gothic angular or baroque plump,
naked or elaborately swathed,
encircled by Della Robbia wreaths,
garnished with whimsical
partridges and pears,
drummers and drums,
lit by oversize stars,
partnered with lambs,
peace doves, sugar plums,
bells, plastic camels in sets of three
as if these were what we needed
for eternity.

But Jesus the Man is not to be seen.
There are some who are wary, these days,
of beards and sandalled feet.

Yet if we celebrate, let it be
that He
has invaded our lives with purpose,
striding over our picturesque traditions,
our shallow sentiment,
overturning our cash registers,
wielding His peace like a sword,
rescuing us into reality,
demanding much more
than the milk and the softness
and the mother warmth
of the baby in the storefront crèche,
(only the Man would ask
all, of each of us)
reaching out
always, urgently, with strong
effective love
(only the Man would give
His life and live
again for love of us).

Oh come, let us adore Him—
Christ—the Lord.

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