Word Made Flesh

Reflection on Christmas

By Barbara Finch

The readings for Christmas:

Isaiah 9: 1-6; Psalm 96: 1-3, 11-13; Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2: 1-14
Isaiah 62: 11-12; Psalm 97: 1.6. 11-12; Titus 3: 4-7; Luke 2: 15-20
Isaiah 52: 7-10; Psalm 98: 1-6; Hebrews 1:-6; John 1:-18

The full text of the readings can be found here.

Christmas once again is upon us. Christmas, the season in which we celebrate Emmanuel, God With Us, Jesus, a Light shone to all the nations in the midst of much darkness. As we reflect upon the status of our world not much has changed since Jesus became like one of us as a small infant over 2000 years ago. Darkness pervades us. The paradox that exists for us in our time, unlike when Jesus walked the earth, is the potential we have to eliminate hunger and poverty, to eliminate war, to cure disease, to create a clean environment, to form governments that promote justice, peace, opportunity and equality, and to be the People of God that embraces all faiths. How do we find the Light to dispel the darkness? What could it be that God is inviting us to become, to understand, and to contemplate this Christmas?

Perhaps, the invitation is to plunge the very depths of the Incarnation. What a profound mystery it is that Jesus who is God from all time and for all time humbled himself to become human like us! Can we even imagine what it must be like to sacrifice one's own essence and uniqueness to become like someone else in order that they might become more themselves? I dare say no one of us would be eager to do so even with persons we deeply love. In reality, the Incarnation of Jesus is profoundly this. Jesus became human in order to show us how to be like God by becoming fully alive and fully human. Jesus' birth teaches us that being fully human is to be Divine! We like Jesus have been birthed into being in order to be the Word Made Flesh. Most of us, if not all of us, seek high and low to find the Light to dispel the darkness that exists in our lives and in our world. We only need to look within our own heart... within our own soul... within our own mind. It is there shining brightly. It takes a child born into poverty and obscurity to remind us each year that we need to stop seeking the Light and simply be the Light. The other day on the radio, I listened to a Christmas Carol sung by Amy Grant. It is entitled "Grown-up Christmas List." Tears rolled down my cheek as I truly experienced the Incarnation. The chorus goes like this:

No More Lives Torn Apart

That Wars Would Never Start

And Time Would Heal All Hearts

Everyone Would Have A Friend

And Right Would Always Win

And Love Would Never End

In the midst of our busy activity of decorating, cleaning, baking, writing of Christmas cards, and the wrapping of presents, is it possible for us to be grown-up enough to be like the Child Jesus and Be the Word Made Flesh for all to see?


Thanks Barbara. We are still in our own infancy. Let us grow together. John