The Greatest Gift
Reading Selection for December 23rd (Again)
“God with Us”
Matthew 1:20b – 21 (NLT) – [Angel to Joseph] “For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. 21 And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.’”
This particular reading selection was so powerful for me that I couldn’t move past it too quickly. It deserved two days of response. It really deserves much more…
Ann Voskamp writes so beautifully on pages 234 – 235, “God can’t stay away. This is the love story that has been coming for you since the beginning…He is the God who is so for us that He can’t stay away from us…the God who so likes us, the God who is so for us that He is the God who chooses to be with us…He disarms Himself of heaven so that you can take Him in arms on earth…He comes as a baby because He’s done with the barriers. He comes vulnerable because He knows the only way to intimacy with you is through vulnerability with you. You can’t get to intimacy except through the door of vulnerability…What religion ever had a god that wanted such intimacy with us that He came with such vulnerability to us?” [Emphasis mine]
“He comes as a baby because He’s done with barriers.” Do you hear that? Say it out loud to yourself, “God is done with barriers!” He wants nothing less than all of us. And He brings nothing less than all of Himself to us. No more fig leaves of shame, no more hiding, no more running, no more pretending, no more fear, no more performing. Only receiving. Only believing. Only resting. Only abiding in Love.
From the moment in the Garden when Adam and Eve ate the fruit, when sin entered in, He’s been coming for us. He’s never taken His eye off the prize. His desire has never waned and He’s never missed an opportunity to Love. He holds back nothing from His beloved. On page 233 Ann writes, “God always gives God…We can always have as much of God as we want.”
We on the other hand, have been too worried about the right and the wrong of it all when the Truth is the point is the Life and death of us all. We’ve always misunderstood what was at stake. Instead of looking for Him, we’ve been looking to be right, on our own terms. The pursued has pursued everything except Life.
Advent, His coming, is Life. To choose anything else is death.
In this season, in this moment He’s coming for you. How much of the infinite God of Love do you want?