This week Fr. Dan Lydon, C.S.V. shares his reflections on the readings for Christmas.
Isaiah 52: 7-10
Hebrews 1: 1-6
John 1: 1-18
While the readings at Midnight Mass and Christmas Mass at Dawn celebrate the marvelous mystery of God entering the world in simplicity and poverty and that God even entered this broken world at all, the Christmas liturgy during the day celebrates the meaning of the event.
The meaning of the Incarnation could be the subject of reflections like these and sermons for a year…or longer! I will limit myself to reflect briefly on two ideas.
First, we celebrate today the mystery that God’s love is so magnificent and so abundant that God “decided” from all of eternity that no matter how broken creation would become…..there would be no other option than to reach out to restore creation to its original blessing. That’s God’s job description: restore, recreate, reinvigorate, and repair. The fine print of the job description speaks of how God will “announce peace” and “comfort his people” and how God will “bare his holy arm” to give us divine strength to rebuild our lives just as the Jewish people had to rebuild their lives after the Holy City of Jerusalem had been destroyed.
Today’s gospel literally says that the Eternal Word “pitched his tent” among us (1: 14) and in our broken world. In today’s Collect we pray:
“O God, you wonderfully created the dignity of human nature and still more wonderfully restored it. Grant that we may share in the divinity of Christ, who humbled himself to share in our humanity.”
That is the same prayer the priest prays as he adds a small drop of water into the chalice at the Preparation of the Gifts. Like a drop of life-giving water, Christ permeates and makes holy our lives. And we who are baptized into Christ are to drop our lives restored in Christ into the life of the world. We are to “pitch our tents” into the world and to revitalize it with Christ. That is OUR job description!
And we celebrate that today!