Monday, December 19, 2011

To live among us...

When we first got married I started collecting a nativity set.  It was fragile and certainly one I wouldn't want children playing with.  Even now, with three little kids in our house, I put the nativity set up high on a shelf so it won't get messed with and broke.

Isn't there something wrong with this scenario?

Until this year it didn't occur to me that there was.

But as I was getting the nativity set out this year, showing each of the figurines to our kids, telling them what each was about, telling them to be careful and not brake anything, then placing Jesus high up on a shelf, I realized that I was going about this all wrong.

Jesus came and lived among us.  He came to our dirty, filthy lives.  The nit and grit of the everyday.  He walked beside the sinners, the hurting and blind, and ate meals with them,too.  He didn't come so he could be placed at a distance, to look at and remember from time to time.

How often do we put Jesus on a shelf?  Place Him at a distance and don't want to bother Him with the messiness of life because, well, He doesn't really care about that stuff, does He?

But Jesus doesn't want to be on a shelf.  He wants to be in every part of our lives.  He wants to help us in our filthiness.  He came to this earth, sacrificed Himself for our sins.  He gave up his realm of heaven to be contained in the body of a baby.  To be touched by the children, hugged by the sick made well.  He came down:

To make us clean.

To make us worth something.

To give our life meaning.

I bought another nativity set this year.  One that is down within reach of our children.  One where Joseph rides in a stroller and the Wisemen have front seat in a Lego car.  Funny though, the figurine that gets handled the most and loved on the most?

Jesus.

He has come to live among us.

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