I am not a collector – I do not like to have a lot of stuff around – I am much more of a throw things out kind of person – I really can’t even stand having a lot of emails in my inbox. But I will admit to having a number of Nativity scenes, carvings, and figurines.
As I sat in mass this past weekend thinking about the Magi and gazing upon the Nativity scene, I started to wonder what it is about this scene that always draws me in? What does this scene say to me over and over again each year? The following words came to me: GRACE, VULNERABILITY, PEACE, SIMPLICITY.
GRACE – this scene – this moment is filled with God’s grace – God’s enormous gift of self – and these people, these characters are so open, so willing to accept all that God is giving to them. They are there ready for God to reveal himself and to be transformed by his gifts and presence. Do I find myself in some of these characters?
VULNERABILITY – these Wise men and shepherds gather around this intimate scene – strangers yet they share this most reverent and holiest of nights. Courage to move closer, to love, to marvel, overtakes them as they witness pure miracle and goodness.
PEACE – I don’t think the scene was quiet – there was a newborn baby, donkeys, lambs, sheep, birds, dogs and who knows what else? But, I do think there was a great sense of peace and calm – a deep peace and connection with the ONE who had called all of them together to celebrate this birth, this moment, this miracle.
SIMPLICITY – here they are, all focused on this one moment – not worried about anything else going on in their lives. I can only imagine the sense of freedom they feel, the sense of letting go of all that is unnecessary in order to be with the ONE who is necessary.
Nativity = Grace + Vulnerability + Peace + Simplicity. Amen