Contemplative at Christmas

It's less than two weeks from Christmas. This year God has been challenging me to truly anticipate and contemplate the gravity of what happened to the relationship between God and His people when He sent His son into the world.

In a recent post I shared a passage I love about being "shipwrecked at the manger." This passage is from the same book, and is about "the contemplative at Christmas:"

"The contemplative at Christmas is not an autonomous self. All his aspirations of bearing fruit as a disciple are anchored in his personal relationship with Jesus Christ. His hope is Christ in person, because
on Christmas day hope became incarnate.

The contemplative at Christmas grows quiet before 'the light that shines in the darkness' (John 1:5). He stills his soul and becomes tranquil like a child in its mother's arms. He interiorizes and appropriates to himself the mercy, forgiveness, reconciliation and love that are embodied in the Child of Bethlehem.
He surrenders to the grace of the Word made flesh. He accepts acceptance.

In the Messiah crying they discern a saving voice saying:

Shhh! Be still. All is well. I am here. Do not be afraid. The world is no longer in the hands of the Evil one, but in the arms of a loving shepherd. In the end everything will be alright. Nothing can harm you permanently. No suffering is irrevocable, no loss is lasting; no defeat is more than transitory, no disappointment is conclusive. Nothing can ever separate us--not troubles, worries, persecutions, not lack of food or clothes, not attacks or invasions. There is absolutely nothing in life or death that will ever come between you and the love of God made visible before your eyes tonight.

Contemplating the crib (meaning, looking at Jesus while loving Him), the Christian's faith flames into joyous expectation that the Christ who came in history will one day come in glory."

As Christmas fast approaches may our hearts all contemplate this truth, "This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." 1 John 4:10

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