Are you longing for a rich and meaningful Christmas, something more than consumerism, busy-ness, over-indulgence, lines, traffic, perfectionism, and a blur of activity?
God, I am.
If you are, too, I want to invite you to practice something with me this Advent, something that may at first sound counter-intuitive and even unspiritual.
I want to invite you to think a lot about your body.
I mean it. I’m inviting you to think about your body, to focus on it, to meditate on it.
Because rightly viewed, your body can lead you into the essence of Christmas. It’s the key to experiencing the beauty and mystery of Christmas as God intends.
Think about it. Christmas was God’s definitive declaration of how much your body is worth to Him. Actually, declaration is nowhere near adequate. Christmas was God’s definitive action revealing to all of creation how much your body is worth to Him. It was His declaration-made-physical, His Word become flesh.
Christmas is not first an inspirational story, it’s an incarnational one.
To be human is not to be spirit or body. It’s to be at once both spirit and body. God wasn’t satisfied to see our bodies abandoned to sin, death, and decay. He didn’t just want to make a way to rescue your spirit. That would have left you broken—spirit rent from body. No, God wanted to rescue you, and you’re not you without your body.
Christmas is when God, who is Spirit, became en-fleshed to rescue humanity, to make us fully alive again, spirit and body.
God’s reason for becoming flesh, His reason for Christmas, is why your body is the key to experiencing the beauty and mystery of Christmas as He intends.
So what are some ways you and I can let our bodies “turn the key,” so to speak, and draw us more deeply into this incredible mystery?
That will be the subject of my next post. For now, begin musing on God’s great love for your body, His unwillingness to leave your body behind, unwillingness to abandon it to sin (including those sins you’re struggling with so much today), death and decay. Begin focusing on this, your body and its great worth to God as declared in the Incarnation.
These questions will help: What are some of your favorite things about having a body? What are some things that are difficult about having a body? Leave a comment here.