God With Skin

Advent is the season that Christians wait in expectation...for a Baby to be born amidst barn animals and for the victorious King to return in power.  Somewhere between here and there, we rejoice that we have not been forgotten.  God hears us, loves us, rescues us.

This is actually my favorite season in the year of the Church.  I know Easter is supposed to be.  If it weren't for Easter, we would just be a hopeless, hot mess of sin, but there is something about the subtlety of Advent that grabs me.  I think it is because, as the nights grow longer and the cold gets in my bones and the pressure of doing things "right" (right decorations, right present, dinner done right) increases, there is this Whisper that none of those things matter.  The 400 years of God's silence were like a long, cold winter, but all the while God had a rescue in the works.  This year I was thinking, if that Baby really was the Savior of the world, how could we want anything else?   I can't come up with a single thing that I need when I think about what that Incarnation means to me.

And then, in that between place where we find ourselves, between the Baby and the King, I wonder what it means if God is within us?  (remember those little papers you colored in Sunday school where the door to the heart swung open and Jesus was inside?)

Is it enough, as a follower of Jesus and a daughter of the King, to say, "I'll pray for you"?  Sure, Dad will show up, but shouldn't I as well?  Maybe He shows up IN me.  It seems too easy to keep my paycheck in the bank and pray for the poor.  It seems calloused to meet in my comfortable church building and try to remember to pray for the persecuted church, when I get the Voice of the Martyrs newsletter to remind me.  It feels shameful to know I will have a nice dinner with my family and not invite friends who have no one to eat with.

Could it be Dad tugging at my heart to show Him to the world?  Telling people about Him is good, but how will they know Him unless they see Him?  I have lots of questions and few answers.  But I am pretty sure that I need to do more, be more, listen more, love more, cry more, give more, laugh more.  Of course I will keep praying since I like to talk with Him, but giving God my wish list isn't enough.  I believe we are to be incarnations, God with skin, to the people around us.

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