The ordinary so extraordinary.

He came, quietly impossible,
Out of a young girl’s womb,
A love as amazingly marvelous
As his bursting from the tomb.

The child was fully human,
This child was wholly God.
The hands of All Love fashioned him
Of mortal flesh and bone and blood,

The ordinary so extraordinary
The stars shook in the sky
As the Lord of all the universe
Was born to live, to love, to die.

He came, quietly impossible:
Nothing will ever be the same:
Jesus, the Light of every heart–
The God we know by name. -Madeleine L’Engle

This reminds me a bit of “O Little Town of Bethlehem”: all these amazing things were happening quietly, without most of the world noticing. Sure, there were some shepherds who heard about it, and, yes, some kings came from the east, but mostly life just went on as usual.

These days, in this country, celebrating Christmas is the usual thing. But the big displays at the mall, the lines to see Santa, the stress that so many people feel–those are actually pretty far removed from the quietly impossible way that Jesus entered the world, lived among us, and then died. It’s our responsibility (all year, but especially at Christmas) to take the time to make the idea that “nothing will ever be the same” a reality in our own lives.

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