I hear friends complaining that it’s much too warm this year to feel like Christmas. I understand their sentiment, although, to be honest, the warmth and humidity feel just like the Christmases I remember growing up in Port Arthur. But when you think about it, the significance of the season is not confined to temperature or emotions associated with holiday memories. The Christ event means the King of Glory stooped to become one of us so that he might lift us up to a whole new plane of existence.
Although each plot is entirely predictable, I can’t keep from viewing episodes of the TV show, “Undercover Boss.” In it’s first season, my wife and I were invited to a preview event of a then upcoming episode centered around a corporate executive where we live. I was hooked. I love witnessing weekly the inevitable personal and executive transformation that results from a chief executive officer going undercover to reconnect with his or her employees. There is something extremely moving about a high level executive awakening to the needs and struggles of his or her employees, and the climax always comes as the transformed leader gives back to those that fostered the undercover awakening. I can’t help drawing a parallel with the incarnation, inadequate comparison as it is. The writer of Hebrews expresses it well:
“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weakness, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
I love that truth! Jesus Christ perfectly identifies with my agony in the trenches and reaches down to pull me up. The incarnation is much more than orthodox dogma; it sustains each step and fills each breath with hope and meaning. If a corporate executive can become a caring employer who delights in giving back, I better understand how Christ joyfully extends to me full and abundant living in light of his own human journey. “The Son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God” (C. S. Lewis). Christmas continues to change the world, one life at a time. Each person that hears the Gospel and responds by faith is living proof that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God!