Sometimes kids are afraid of Santa but I can't remember a child being afraid of the baby represented in the manger. Even as adults, we tend to be quite comfortable with God, in the form of an infant.
From the moment of his conception, God became completely vulnerable in the womb of Mary. This was all by God's initiative. The Bible does not give us information about Jesus' size or weight at birth, but even if he were a 10-pound baby, he was as vulnerable as any infant born into this world.
This speaks to me of God's willingness to become totally dependent on human beings since he was in no position to fend for himself as a newborn infant. At Christmas one can easily contemplate why God would make himself so weak and dependent. Could it be to show us our own lack of independence? This thought may not set well in our day when atheism is making strong headways in our culture. We can all easily delude ourselves thinking we are autonomous, independent and self-sufficient. Statistics tell us there was a 5 percent increase in the number of Americans in the past five years who consider themselves religiously unaffiliated. Nineteen percent of Americans say they seldom or never pray.
Rev. Bruce Krebs
In the aftermath of the terrible devastation of Hurricane Sandy, it is evident that many who thought themselves independent suddenly found how vulnerable and dependent they are on God and other people. Our 2011 flood reminded us of the same.
Is there any area in your life in which you find yourself struggling? One needs to search no further than the Christmas manger for help. The Infant of Christmas wonderfully revealed our God in the flesh. Jesus came to earth for us. He is bigger than any need we may have. The Babe reveals the truth of our own total dependency and God's reaching down to save us. May God's gentle love for you, revealed in the Infant Jesus, comfort you and fill your heart with joy.
The Rev. Bruce Krebs is pastor of Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Minot.
Reflections, a mini-sermon written by Minot and area clergy, will appear each Saturday in The Minot Daily News. Clergy interested in writing a mini-sermon should contact Religion Editor Loretta Johnson at 857-1952.