Daily Bread Dec. 29

A Baby Is Born
By Merna Short of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them; and I will bless them and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary among them forevermore. My dwelling place shall be with them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. —Ezekiel 37:26–27 NRSV

My firstborn was a daughter. When she was placed in my arms, I looked at her with awe and an overwhelming sense of inadequacy. ”Whatever have I done?” I wondered.

Here was this tiny babe, and she was my responsibility. Throughout her life I would have her in my care to nurture physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Leading up to her birth this had not struck me. But now, with such force, it did!

At this time when we celebrate Jesus’ birth, I wonder about what that young girl Mary pondered as she looked at the baby in her arms. This was not even an ordinary baby. This was the Son of God.

Did Mary look with wonder at the reality of what had happened? As we celebrate Jesus’ birth, are we awed by the wonder of God’s message of love?

God did not promise Mary and Joseph an easy passage, but I’m sure God’s message was “I will be with you.” That is the message we are assured of today as we relive the Christmas story. God has promised us, “I will be with you.”

What a blessing! What an assurance! Hallelujah! God with us!

Christmas Prayer Phrase

I ponder the mystery being born in me.

Invitation to Spiritual Practice

Spend a few moments dwelling in God’s presence. Pay attention to where your heart feels drawn into prayer. What words, images, or themes in this story lead you to reflect on your own faith journey? What is God’s invitation to you this day?

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