Advent: Of True Greatness

“Infant Holy, Infant Lowly”

Infant holy, Infant lowly,

For His bed–a cattle stall;

Oxen lowing, little knowing

Christ the Babe, is Lord of all.

Swift are winging angels singing,

Noels ringing, tidings bringing:

Christ, the Babe, is Lord of all!

Christ, the Babe, is Lord of all!

Flocks were sleeping; shepherds keeping

Vigil till the morning new

Saw the glory, heard the story–

Tidings of a gospel true.

Thus rejoicing, free from sorrow,

Praises voicing greet the morrow:

Christ, the Babe, was born for you!

Christ, the Babe, was born for you!

Polish Carol, paraphrase by Edith E.M. Reed

Do you ever find yourself frustrated that you are not receiving what you believe you deserve?  Or relieved that you have not received what you know you deserve?  The human condition is bent toward self-exaltation.

The Babe in the manger confronts our self-idolatry.  We tell stories about ourselves to make us look better than we know we are.  We dress up vice to make it appear as virtue.   We jockey and canjole for esteem–in our own eyes and the eyes of others.

“Christ, the Babe, is Lord of all.”   He entered poor.  Lowly.  Humbled.  

As you meditate on the manger today, let the paradox of the most Holy One wrapped in swaddling recalibrate your idea of of true greatness.  Bend your knee to peer closely at the strength, majesty, and glory tucked amongst the hay of His makeshift bed.  Let the sounds of the first breaths and sighs of the Incarnate One woo your heart to humility. 

Is there some task or responsibility you feel is beneath you?  Is there a relationship in which you feel you are undervalued or disrespected?  Remember Jesus.