It really is a strange way to save the world. God, the Creator of the universe, here before anything was ever created, knew he would one day come in the form of a baby to save a sick and dying world. It was not a last minute plan because things did not go as he had first expected them to, it was always in his mind to do. When Adam was formed, He knew that one day He would walk this earth as a man. He would willingly go to a cruel cross and die for the sins of the entire world upon him. It was not a loud battlefield cry that was heard the night he came, it was a sweet infant cry making its way across the world into the hearts of shepherds and kings and ordinary people like you and me. It is still heard today throughout the world, each time a sinner is born again.
I often wonder about the barn he was born in. I wonder if there were cross beams that were above the manger and when the light was just so, did it look like the shadow of a cross upon him? There was a shadow of a cross, others may not have been able to see it with human eyes, but it was there, always there. I wonder if Mary sensed it or was the moment just as wonderful for her as it is for every mother who has ever seen and held their baby for the first time?
Can you imagine the very one who had spoken life into existence, formed the oceans and animals were helplessly lying in a manger needing everything done for him by a mother, a very young inexperienced mother? The all powerful, all knowing, eternal and perfect, lying there needing his diaper changed… Really it amazes me, humbles me, thrills me.
I often wonder about Mary. This child had her entire life altered in one moment, the angel came and told her she would become pregnant although she did not know a man and that he would save the people one day. Can you imagine how as a mother how often she must have repeated what the Angel’s had said over and over again as Jesus grew into boyhood than into a young man? She must have watched him grow, seen the purity he walked in and marveled and wondered. Did she remember those words when she stood watching her son on the cross where he was dying a cruel and undeserved death? Did she feel afraid then? The angel had said not to be afraid, but was she? I think I might have been.
He did not have to come, but he did. He chose to come as one of us, yes, it seems a strange way to save a world, but obviously the right way. For all his ways are just and right. His love propelled him through time and space to save me, a filthy wretch like me, I am eternally grateful for the love that made him come and held him to the cross.
Luke 2 tells us the story of Jesus birth. Take time to read it today and be thankful that he chose to come and he chose to die. Nothing was a mistake and all was miraculous and wonderful. All planned from before time began and carried out in his way, his time. Thank you, Lord, for the amazing love, mercy, and grace that made you cry in a manger and die on a cross.