Sunday, December 25, 2022

Christmas Reflection

The bitter cold air is beginning to settle in  as I write these words. The beautiful gospel we heard from John’s gospel takes us not to the stable in Bethlehem but to the very beginning, reaching back into time before time even existed. “In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God, the Word was God… and the Word became flesh and dwelled among us.” The Word, the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity descended into time, into the world, into our lives by uniting divinity with humanity in Jesus, the Christ. Fully human. Fully Divine.

This creator God, who existed before time, who simply IS, eternally present, created the world comprised of ever evolving galaxies and at the heart of this creation: humankind. God created us in His image and likeness, the pinnacle of all of creation, but something happened to cause a rupture in our relationship with this beautiful, living God. The human family in its many expressions became divided, allowing violence and destruction to deform God’s beautiful Creation. The Word, the Son, the Second Person of Trinity love, became flesh. God became a baby, totally dependent upon Mary and Joseph, vulnerable and helpless.

Christ in the Incarnation, UNITES us in His flesh, rooted in his divinity. Look around the church and you will see visible signs of the power of the Incarnation in each nativity scene. The Christ child is expressed in many cultures throughout the world.

The beauty of Christmas is that we are all connected with each other and in Christ. The work of restoring and renovating Creation began on that first Christmas and we allow this creating energy to take root in our own flesh and blood. In our humanity, we extend the great Incarnation.

Yes, there are visible signs of the “old order” of a divided Creation that lives out of envy, inflated egos, abuse of power, destroying God’s magnificent world through a consistent degradation of the earth and environment. Yes, racism, ignoring the poor, supporting and even encouraging unjust economic systems that always lead to war continue to divide. Yes, the many darknesses are so apparent.

But we have the the living God, the Word made flesh, dwelling deeply within our hearts. His Love and mercy and compassion are waiting for us to be tapped into so we become the instruments of giving birth to a new earth and a new heaven. We are all connected with each other: nations, cultures, races, religions, ways of living and loving and the Incarnation, begun at Christmas, continues difficult in each one of us.

YOU are the beloved child of God, creating in His Image but called to be LIKE God. God’s “likeness” is selfless, merciful, poor in spirit, peacemaking and bridge building. To be “like” God is to root out the darknesses within our own hearts so that we become beacons of light and hope. We have much to celebrate on this Christmas morning as the Divine energy of the Word made Flesh emanates out of us and into mended relationships, helping people in their illness, making justice a lived reality, trying to make our world a better place for those who suffer injustice and poverty at the hands of corrupted leaders and systems of power.

The beauty of Christmas can be sung with choirs of angels supporting our voices. Let us sing  the Christmas Carol of gladness and cheer as Love, God’s Love,  unites us into a common human family.