More from Madeleine L`Engle . . .
“Power. Greater power than we can imagine, abandoned, as the Word knew the powerlessness of the unborn child, still unformed, taking up almost no space in the great ocean of amniotic fluid, unseeing, unhearing, unknowing. Slowly growing, as any human embryo grows, arms and legs and a head, eyes, mouth, nose, slowly swimming into life until the ocean of the womb is no longer large enough and it is time for birth . . .
Christ, the Second Person of the Trinity; Christ, the Maker of the universe or perhaps many universes, willingly and lovingly leaving all that power and coming to this poor, sin-filled planet to live with us for a few years to show us what we ought to be and could be.
Christ came to us as Jesus of Nazareth, wholly human and wholly divine, to show us what it means to be made in God’s image…Jesus, as Paul reminds us, was the firstborn of many brethren . . .
I stand on the deck of my cottage, looking at the sky full of God’s children, and know that I am one of them.”
How many times have you read or heard Philippians 2:5-11 and thought about all that Jesus left in order to come to us . . . to come for us?
Take some time to read those passages aloud now.
Interestingly, we don’t often continue on and read what comes next, often due to the superficial breaks that have been placed in the scriptures by translators. Look at what verses 12-16 say: “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed — not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence — (NOTE: remember that Paul is writing this from prison) — continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and act according to his good purpose. Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life — in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.”
Shine Like A Star
Just as the “star of Bethlehem” shone so brightly that it led people to where the infant Jesus could be found, take some time to reflect on how your life “shines like a star” to lead people one step closer to Jesus — not the infant (wordless) Jesus, but the risen, living, saving Word of God, made flesh, alive today in us by His Holy Spirit!
Ask God to shine through you today to the people you encounter.
Madeleine L'Engle was a poet and novelist who was most famous for young adult literature (“A Wrinkle In Time” being her most well know piece). She was an Episcopalian and considered herself a Christian universalist which would set her apart from evangelical Christians. Nevertheless, she is a brilliant writer who loved Jesus and was unafraid to wonder about the things of God. As you will see, she takes much poetic license with scripture but I think what she says stirs up deeper truth in all of us and is well worth reading.