I’ve been thinking about baby Jesus a bit in the past few weeks. I’m still finding it pretty remarkable that God would want to put on skin and bones. In my philosophy classes, we’ve talked about how the flesh was seen by the Greeks as a low state of being. Real existence to them wasn’t even manifested in material things but rather in a perfect Idea.
So it’s radical that Jesus, the most perfect being in all that exists, decided to put on skin and bones and live among His creation. Actually, it’s more like insanity. That’s like you or me wanting to become a stick figure in order to connect better with our creations (unless you can draw better than a stick figure… in which case, congratulations are in order). And, even more radical, it’s because He loved too much too stay away, too much to let His creation continue to be separated from Him, even though they created the gap themselves!
I’ve been trying to wrap my mind around God’s love for me this semester, because I needed it. I still do, and I bet you do, too. I need to know that God loves me so much and so radically that He would give everything (and did give everything) so that we could have a repaired relationship.
As I’ve thought about this, though, the best part is that it’s for me (hallelujah)… but it’s not just for me.
I don’t understand God’s love. I don’t understand why I can’t understand it, either. I don’t understand how God can love everything but still be untainted by the things that aren’t lovely. I don’t understand how God can love me enough to keep pursuing me when I would rather not be pursued. But I know it’s so big that it covers over all my sins. I know that it’s the kind of love that sends a beloved Son to die and defeat Sin and Death once and for all.
And I know it’s for everyone. I know it’s for the wounded and those who can’t find their way. I know it’s for people who have it all but have nothing. I know it’s for people who hate God or deny Him or think He’s obsolete or thinks He hates them or don’t want Him to exist and mess with their lives. I know it’s for people who are mad at God. It’s for those of us who want to love God with everything but are totally incapable. It’s for food service people and businesspeople and USPS even though they’re always crabby and people who don’t have any clue who God is or what He’s about. It’s for the homeless and the people with home enough for 12 people. It’s for the fatherless and the people with more parents than they know what to do with.
It’s for me.
And it’s for you.
And for everyone else.
Which is insane. And I don’t understand it. But I think the most remarkable things in life are the things I try to grasp and can’t. I think the most incredible truths are the ones beyond me, because that means it’s bigger than me. I don’t need a God I can understand and fit in my box, because then He’s small enough for me to handle.
No, I need a God big enough to love the whole world enough that He would send His only Son so that anyone who accepts the gift could have a real relationship with Him.