The other day I watched as a jumbo jet lumbered earthward, closer and closer as it approached the runway. I never cease to be in awe of the human minds which God has made capable of inventing such things as vehicles soaring in the sky. I’ve watched airplanes since I was a little girl and the thrill of seeing them taking off, flying above, and landing has never waned.
As I thought about this, my mind wandered to other things which bring me an undiminishing sense of awe. A baby born, first steps, thunderstorms, radishes popping out of sodden dirt after a hailstorm in my childhood first garden.
I pondered some more about ‘awesome’ things and my mind settled on the most amazing thought of all, a story which, sadly, often ceases to amaze us as our busy minds and hearts and lives become inured to the sheer wonder of what happened two millennia ago at the center of our planet. It is a story that began in eternity past, a concept and reality our finite minds cannot readily grasp.
The Godhead, in infinite love and mercy and grace for a certain people marked out for undeserved favor, covenanted in a remarkable plan to send the Son as the Savior of His chosen ones to adopt them as heirs of everything the Father possesses, never to be disowned. The Old Testament tells the promise and lead-up to the appearing of the Savior Son.
And then, when the fullness of the time had come, God the Father sent the Spirit to overshadow a faithful young virgin and planted the Son in her womb to be born in human flesh, a man, yet remaining fully God. Truly befitting the word “awesome”.
O, Mystery of mysteries.
Some others were looking up in the skies one night. These wise men saw a star, unfamiliar, a star in the East, a star they followed until it lit over the king of Kings in a lowly manger in the City of David. God had come to earth to live with man. Immanuel.
The story does not end in Bethlehem. Jesus, the God-Man, born under the law, grew up to obey the law perfectly in order to fulfill what God commanded me, but I could not.
My sins were placed on Him as He suffered, nailed to the wooden tree, feeling the full fury of God’s just wrath, receiving what I deserved so that I might be right with God.
Three days later the Father raised from death this perfect, sacrificial Lamb—raised for my justification and the promise of my own resurrection.
When Gabriel, the angel from God, appeared to sweet Mary, this pure, young maiden had only vague ideas of what this child to be placed in her womb would accomplish. Surely she predicted the inevitable gossip and inaccurate judgments concerning His origin since Mary was unmarried, yet she faithfully submitted to God’s will for her life, knowing that this was the promised Messiah coming to take away sins. How that would occur she could only speculate within the framework of her Jewish upbringing and its sacrificial system. When she held the little one nine months later she pondered all these things in her heart. After Jesus’ death and subsequent resurrection, when she went to live with John and his family, much began to be clear since that day many preceding years when the angel had said, “Hail, Mary, highly favored one!” Old, devout, and righteous Simeon certainly had told her that a sword would pierce her mama’s heart. And then! He was risen, just as He said.
Magnificent and awe-filled meditation.
As the disciples watched the cloud take Him back to His Father, the angel assured them that this same Jesus would return for them and for us, reiterating what the Master had promised on one of those days when they walked and sat with Him.
May these truths continually and faithfully fill our hearts with the Awe of all awes as we worship Christ, the Savior, the King of all kings and Lord of all lords this Christmas.
Sent from my iPhone