God has done everything; he has done the impossible:
he was made flesh. His all–
powerful love has accomplished something which surpasses all human understanding:
the Infinite has become a child, has entered the human family.
And yet, this same God cannot enter my heart unless I open the door to him.”
Pope Benedict XVI
(Rosemary Beach / Julie Cook / 2020)
“God travels wonderful ways with human beings,
but he does not comply with the views and opinions of people.
God does not go the way that people want to prescribe for him; rather,
his way is beyond all comprehension, free and self-determined beyond all proof.
Where reason is indignant, where our nature rebels,
where our piety anxiously keeps us away:
that is precisely where God loves to be.
There he confounds the reason of the reasonable;
there he aggravates our nature, our piety—that is where he wants to be,
and no one can keep him from it.
Only the humble believe him and rejoice that God is so free and so marvelous
that he does wonders where people despair,
that he takes what is little and lowly and makes it marvelous.
And that is the wonder of all wonders, that God loves the lowly…
God is not ashamed of the lowliness of human beings.
God marches right in.
He chooses people as his instruments and performs his wonders where
one would least expect them.
God is near to lowliness; he loves the lost,
the neglected, the unseemly, the excluded,
the weak and broken.”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, God is in the Manger:
Reflections on Advent and Christmas
And so He has come…
God of God
Light of Light
Very God of very God…
Begotten of woman, not made
and yet Risen again for our Redemption and Deliverance
And so it is on this Christmas day…
this day of Light and Hope…that we find not only life…
but it is in that life that we must also find death…
For it is in the miracle of both life and death…
That of His birth, His life and eventually His death…
it is there that we actually find our most necessary Hope…
It is a hope found in both life and death—
of which each mingle together so blessedly and painfully…
yet oh so poignantly…
melding into that single transcendence of the Resurrection.
So on this Christmas day we are reminded, once again, that yes,
we are to rejoice…
We rejoice because we have each been invited to a grand banquet…
We have been invited to claim our rightful place at the table…
taking in all that is freely given and yet that which is gravely
but miraculously given nonetheless.
So in that Hope, found in both birth and death,
is a brilliance of illumination…scattering the
darkness from wherever it yearns to spread.
A great Light has shown in that darkness.
And that darkness scatters
because that Light has overcome the darkness.
All of which is offered to each man and woman, young and old,
sick and in-firmed, lofty and simple…underseved, yet a gift
So yes, we are told to rejoice…
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
Again I say,
“What worthy return can we make for so great a condescension?
The One Only-begotten God, ineffably born of God,
entered the Virgin’s womb and grew and took the frame of poor humanity.
He who upholds the universe, within whom and through whom are all things,
was brought forth by common childbirth.
He at whose voice archangels and angels tremble,
and heaven and earth and all the elements of this world are melted,
was heard in childish wailing.
The Invisible and Incomprehensible,
whom sight and feeling and touch cannot measure, was wrapped in a cradle.”
St. Hilary of Poitiers