Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Anticipating Christ: The Humility of a King

What strikes me the most about the story of Christ’s birth is the humility displayed in His coming.
I mean, think about it. This is God. This is the Holy of Holies. This is the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. He fully deserved the most triumphant entry, accompanied by a host of angels and wrapped in brilliant light.
But He didn’t. He chose to be born in a tiny stable, and not those cute little stables that we see in nativity scenes. Things were not clean and organized back in those days. This was a little lean-to filled with animals that had been travelling. It was not clean. It was not organized. It probably reeked of urine and manure. And this “manger” was a feeding trough. Nasty. Probably crusted with remnants of old food. Definitely not something anyone would want to place their child in. But it was all they had, and it was the place that He divinely appointed to be born in.  
And this is the key: it’s not like Jesus didn’t have a choice but to be born in a stable. This was not a circumstance that was out of God’s control. It was not a mistake. God’s plan was for this humble birth to take place. But why???
Philippians 2: 5-11 sums it up pretty well:
“Let Christ Jesus be your example as to what your attitude should be. For He, who had always been God by nature, did not cling to His prerogatives as God's equal, but stripped Himself of all privilege by consenting to be a slave by nature and being born as mortal man. And having become man, He humbled Himself by living a life of utter obedience, even to the extent of dying. And the death He died was the death of a common criminal. That is why God has now lifted Him so high and has given Him the name beyond all names, so that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, whether in heaven or earth or under the earth. And that is why in the end every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is the Lord to the glory of God the Father.”
In Christ’s birth, throughout His life, and even in His death, He was a perfect example of humility. He had every right to be prideful, I mean, c’mon, He’s God. You can’t get any better than that! But rather than clinging to His prerogatives, He chose to live the ultimate life of humility so that He could display the attitude we should have.
As we go through the month of December (and really through the rest of the year as well) we need to be walking in humility—following the example set forth by our Messiah. We should not think of ourselves as too important to get our hands dirty for the Kingdom of God. We can follow in Christ’s footsteps, and be a shining light to those around us with our humble attitude and servant-minded hearts!
"She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins."  ~Matthew 1:21

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