Modern Psalm: Keep Me in Wonder of Jesus
“And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.” (Luke 2: 6-7, ESV)
All this season, I’ve felt so captured by this picture: a dusty, low-lit stable. Horses, maybe some cattle, all huddled in their stalls, making the occasional barnyard chatter. Somewhere in the room, a torch is burning, lighting up a little area and casting long shadows across the dirt floor and the stable walls.
Within the soft and yellow firelight is a young couple, as tidy as they could manage in a scene such as
this. The man sports a beard and rough hands. The woman is beautiful, although slightly disheveled and barefoot, her sandals tossed to the side. The expression on their faces is delightful bewilderment; their eyes are exhausted but still shiny with wonder.
Their gaze is fixed on a manger between them. I don’t mistake the condition of the trough; I know it must have been roughly hewn and prickly around the edges. It isn’t stained to bring out the wood grain or sanded down, but it is full of hay for padding its very precious contents: a newborn baby with a fresh and dewy face and eyes that had only just opened into the world beyond.
This is the scene that has played in my head over the past month, and my imagination may be filling in many of the spaces, but the premise is true. Somewhere, thousands of years ago, this happened: you sent yourself to be born of a virgin, adopted by her fiance, and destined to save me. When I think about it, I am truly in awe of how so much time and such preparation and care was taken so that I could be brought closer to You.
How, on earth, could that be? What heights of love could make that possible?
Jesus, I wish I could have seen it, too. I wish I could look at your face like the shepherds. I wish I could hold you and let you wrap your little hand around my finger, like Simeon. I wish I could worship you and lay at your feet, like the wise men. I wish that just for a moment, I could see that stable, real as it is in my imagination.
Lord, keep me in awe of that moment. Keep me in awe of the manger. Keep me in wonder of the infant. Forgive me for anything I’ve done this season that wasn’t in a posture of remembrance of that moment. Thank you for that turning point in history when you left your throne in Heaven to be made into flesh. Thank you for making yourself so small so that your love and power could be witnessed so greatly.
Continue to make your wonders real to me. Please continue to take my breath away with the goodness of your heart. Lord, I pray that you would make me someone who would feel your love and be quick to show it to others. I pray that you would help me to be someone who could clearly communicate your affection and passion for your people.
Thank you, Pops, for everything; but today especially, for making your Son into flesh and giving me an opportunity to know you. Thank you for sending a baby that would carry such a heavy and important call out. Thank you for constantly wrapping your beauty in the ordinary and for reminding me that you don’t make coincidences.
Thank you for Christmas, Pops. Thank you for the opportunity to remember your sovereign goodnesses. Thank you for never letting me forget them.
I love you so much. Talk to you soon, Cortney
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