Christmas Eve 2014 – “It’s All about a Baby”
It’s all about a baby! Not just any baby, but at the same time every baby. The birth of the Christ child is not just the property of Christians. John’s gospel proclaims that this child is the light of the world, and that the light of this child enlightens all humanity and, dare we say, all creation.
An ordinary birth in the first century, repeated by the billions over the past two thousand years, yet a birth that changes everything. An expectant mother, a perplexed father, no social or economic safety net or room in the inn, and yet the angels sing, and looked down upon shepherds at the bottom of the economic ladder, and wealthy wise men – the favored 1% – give homage.
The birth of Jesus tells us that no birth is ordinary. God comes to us in every baby, those hoped for and those unexpected and sometimes unwanted. God comes to us in the most common activities of giving birth, nurturing a child, and preparing a home. This is the light of the world – at your tables, greeting Christmas guests, and wrapping presents.
Walt Whitman once said, “All is miracle,” and that is the message of Christmas. You are a miracle, the one sitting next to you is a miracle, the family looking for a home, and residents of war torn villages are miracles; the whitecaps on Nantucket Sound and the soft falling snow – all miracle.
The Word becomes flesh, John’s gospel proclaims, and dwells among us full of grace and truth. God embodied, incarnate in a stable, and in this world that in all its complexity constantly births God’s Christ-children.
For a moment, let us breathe deeply, pausing, to consider the wonder of it all. A child born in a stable, a child born at Cape Cod Hospital, a child conceived in a Petrie dish – all miracles, and you living and breathing, God’s beloved, are a miracle as well.
The message tonight is stop and pause awhile – to open to miracles – if God can be born in Bethlehem, God can show up as you unwrap presents, make a Christmas toast, hit the road to visit relatives, or tuck a child in bed, with visions of Santa and candy canes.
The word is made flesh in a baby and in the child, still alive in all of us, bringing wonders of God’s love and miracles in every moment.
Merry Christmas, God’s beloved children.