They cried so long ago,
"Come, O Come!"
Their hearts as beggars',
Not as a star,
not weak or dim,
but as Sun,
"“But there comes a light...a light of love…No mere candles waiting in the dark, but a dawn.”
Redemption. Making that which was wrong, right. Making that which was dirty, clean. Making that which was empty full. Making all who are weary, strong. Making all who are lonely, loved. Those who come to Him, or really, simply turn to Him. He has already come.
Grace. Undeserved. As my pastor said tonight, just before a thousand candles were held high in laud to the Redeemer of our souls, we cannot come to the story of Christmas without coming to the dilemma of our own helplessness. We are broken people. We don't like to hear it, I don't always like to hear it--but we are. I am. In humility, this is the most freeing diagnosis. People find relief in finally figuring out what is wrong after months of tests and doctor's visits, even if the diagnosis is bad. Why? So they know what can be done.
We are a broken people. Let it sink in, just how broken we are--no sin is greater than another to the Creator. That lie? Makes me as dirty as a murderer in God's eyes. What can be done, then? He comes. He sends Himself--His Son who is Himself in the mystery of the Trinity. Plans His birth carefully--made sure there were no rooms, no places of comfort. He planted Himself right in the messiest of places, and isn't it grand? To know He'll plant Himself in my messiest of places without hesitation. 'Tis a glorious imposition, which wrecks my life, but makes me whole. Ahh, where I would be but for Him: lonely places, indeed. But in that still moment, as my pastor spoke of His hand reaching through eternity, I felt the weight of it, the heaviness, the closeness of Him, reaching into time to soften this hard heart once more.
“Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts"