This Christmas let us all be reminded of the blessed dignity Christ gave to poor oppressed people in dire circumstances living in backwater parts of the world by being born to poor oppressed parents under dire circumstances living in a backwater part of the world.
Let us reflect on Mary’s first words of song after she was told that she would give birth to The Savior: “He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty”(Luke 1:51-53). As well as the inaugural address of the Savior and He began His earthly ministry: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18-19, cross-reference Isaiah 61:1-2) Who is the rich, who is the poor, who is the proud, and who is the hungry?
Let us be in awe of Christ’s humility and ultimate example of incarnate personal love — Lest we become complacent in our sense of earthly entitlement and comfort. For the Christmas story is not just about where Jesus came into from but also where He came from. Christ came as the poor and oppressed to the poor and oppressed from heaven itself as the King of Kings: Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death — even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2: 5-11). Do we consider our comfortable earthly position as something to be grasped? Are we willing to humble ourselves and take on the very nature of a servant?
Let us understand the fullness of God’s gift to us in the self-giving love of the cross and what it is to truly love one another as Christ loved us. Are we giving our lives to Jesus as he gave His to us? How much are we really giving to one another? How much are we really giving to Jesus? Are we giving our entire life? Is your life being offered to Jesus? Are you loving as Jesus loved (John 13:34)? Are you living out the incarnation?
Let us revere the God who sees justice as a way for us to know Him: He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well. Is not this to know me? says the LORD (Jeremiah 22:16). And looks for justice from us: “The LORD looked and was displeased that there was no justice. He saw that there was no one, He was appalled that there was no one to intervene” (Isaiah 59:15-16).
This Christmas let us pray for, praise with, and commit to poor oppressed brothers and sisters in Christ in dire circumstances living in backwater parts of the world: â€¦But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it (1 Corinthians 12: 24-25).
He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8).