Meditation: What did we get for Christmas?
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him how brings good news, who proclaims peace, who brings glad tiding of good things, Who proclaims salvation, who says to Zion your god reigns…..The Lord had comforted his people. Isaiah 52:7-9
The children in the living room of humanity are anxious to explore the gift of Christmas. We rise early to unwrap the present we have been hoping for. Year in... year out, humanity always wishes for a savior. Man-made saviors have been a disappointment. They come to power by force and manipulation and they all use the same tools of riches, military might and religion. This model is often placed upon our understanding of God as well. What was the revolutionary gift that came to earth that first Christmas?
People we looking for the kind of savior they had in the past. Perhaps they were waiting for another Moses, an Abraham, a Jonah or an Elijah. Humanity wanted a revolutionary leader to set things right. But, what we received was so revolutionary that many have not been able to embrace it.
That first Christmas morning the sky-god came down to earth (Emmanuel- God with us). The distant unapproachable Zeus-like god who wields lighting bolts from the clouds and punishes evil-doers became brother-God. Rather than a savior reigning with power and dominance his presence teaches that salvation comes to us through relationships. The infant Jesus is dependent, powerless, and needy. His survival depends on compassion, sensitivity and constant care. His presence on the earth establishes interdependent relationships and expands the family of humanity. Our brother-God came to earth to establish the Kingdom of Heaven and enlarge Zion to include all who desire to live in compassion and love.
Citizens of his Kingdom no longer follow the path of dominance, punishment, violence, vengeance, riches, and oppressive religious practices. The ”salvation” is in loving understanding relationships. The quiet word which turns away wrath, forgiveness of an enemy, and values based on simplicity and generosity are built in to the Constitution of the Kingdom of Heaven.
What did we get for Christmas. We got a whole new way of being. If all who claim to be followers of our Savior Jesus were to embrace his teachings and example, the world would be saved from violence, oppression, and greed. We have received this gift every year for the last 2006 years and yet it often seems we have never really taken it out of the box.
Prayer: Innocent lovely Christ child, gather humanity’s children (both young and old) in your gentle humility. Teach us how to love and understand others and to impact the world with your grace. We remember your birth, your life, your death and your re-birth. Quicken our spirits to love courageously and to release into the world the contents of the lovely package left for us this Christmas morning. -Amen.
Action: Open your gift, try it on and go out into the world.
Merry Christmas- Karen Cobb