The Clothes of Reality 12/13/15

Luke 2:8-12
8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.  9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.  10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.  12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

As I read this from Luke I couldn’t help but think of what I expect to find at that cradle. There’s a lot of beautiful images that fill my head that are probably more romance than reality.  I can understand the bright light of the Glory of the Lord and Heavenly Hosts would certainly be signs and maybe a baby with a halo but the angel specifically said “And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”  Wasn’t that what every baby was wrapped in?

There’s an old story of a European ruler who would sneak away and walk among his people incognito.  It drove his security people nuts but his response was “I cannot rule my people unless I know how they live.”   This birth was just like that: God revealed to our world as an ordinary baby, wrapped in ordinary swaddling clothes…from ordinary parents in an ordinary stable…incognito.

This is a mystery I’m wondering about this Advent.   How many times have I missed God because the circumstances seemed too ordinary?  Isn’t that the whole reason we walk again to the cradle year after year?  It’s our chance to see a miracle wrapped in The Clothes of Reality.

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