Saturday, December 21, 2013

Making Room for a Baby: "The Feast of the Incarnation"

A beautiful reflection by Mrs. Ellen J. Dooley, of the editorial staff, and copy editor for, Immaculata University Magazine. Ellen is a parishioner of St. George's Episcopal Church in Summerville, S.C. She serves on the vestry.  Her husband, her three boys and her mother all actively serve God in this congregation. I am honored that she granted permission to share her piece here. This was originally published in the St. George's Newsletter.
Thank you, Ellen.  CH +

The Feast of the Incarnation

…and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning forks; nation shall not lift the sword against nation; neither shall they learn war anymore.  Isaiah 2:4

The only war on Christmas is the one waged on the battleground of the human heart.

When we are cold instead of warm, bitter instead of sweet, hard instead of supple, closed instead of curious, arrogant instead of vulnerable, stingy instead of lush.

A baby is all of these things:  warm, sweet, supple, curious, vulnerable and lush.
A feast for the senses.  A feast of incarnation.

This is how God loved the world—the noisy, cruel, fallen worldly world:
He came into the thick of it as a baby.  The Author wrote Himself into the story,
starting life smaller even than a mustard seed.

Happy Holidays means, literally, Happy Holy Days.
The Creator and Sustainer, the Holy One of Israel,
He who delights in the brilliance of Alpha Centauri,
the toothiness of warthogs, the juiciness of pomegranates, is not threatened, neither is He offended.

All days are holy.  All nights are sacred.

All hearts—cluttered, creaking, scarred, mangy, wrecked—
can still make room for a baby.

No grand gestures needed.
Only one thing is needful.

Heave aside the detritus of long, frantic accumulation.
Clear a small space.

That’s all a baby needs.

After growing curled and snug in the womb’s crimson cocoon, a baby needs to nestle beneath a beating human heart.
Hold Me…hold Me…hold Me…

As Mary held Him through whom all things were made,
from the Presentation to the Pietà,
hold Me…hold Me…hold Me…

All days are holy.  All nights are sacred.

All hearts—broken, bleeding, pierced and pleading—
can still make room for a baby.

He needs so little space,
yet transforms even the deepest, darkest squalor
with utter, unquenchable beauty.


*Peace in Aramaic

~ Ellen Dooley

1 comment:

  1. For the Christian it has been said that all ground is "Holy ground" and every bush is a "burning bush."