This morning, my daughters and I were talking about the birth of Jesus, and I was trying to think of a way to capture the wonder of it. I mean, it’s one thing to say “God became a man” – but I wanted them to get it, to grasp how bizarre it was that the God of the universe humbled Himself and moved into the body of a vulnerable baby boy.
So I asked them how they would feel if they came home and couldn’t find their mother anywhere, but they heard a baby crying upstairs. And when they found the baby, they saw that it had just come from the hospital and was wearing an identification bracelet. Then they read their mother’s name on the bracelet and realized that she had somehow become a helpless baby who needed them to feed her, hold her, and wipe her bottom.
My daughters thought the concept was both sad and hilarious – especially the part about them having to wipe their mother’s bottom. And then, in a fresh way, it dawned on me that the Incarnation is sad and hilarious too. Who, but God, would design a plan to save the world and use a baby to do it? Who, but God, would shrink Himself down to a person who needed flawed human beings to feed Him, hold Him, and wipe His bottom?
Mary was a teenager who witnessed the Incarnation in person, and she quietly “treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Luke 2:19). As we view the Incarnation from a distance, let’s look for ways to do the same.