God could have chosen another way to reveal himself. He could have come as a celestial being or, at least, a mighty action figure. You would think in a way or means clearly superior to us and beyond our ways. Would he not be easier to recognize that way? All then would acknowledge him, respect him, worship him. Right?
But God chose to come as an infant—a poor one at that, a screaming, squalling, smiling, sleeping child who makes Mary and Joseph proud, yet humble parents. Such an ordinary, everyday kind of way.
Last night at Mt. Carmel seven friends braved the cold to provide a reminder of the coming of the Christ Child. It was beautiful and simple. Legend has it that one Christmas Eve, Saint Francis and his ragtag followers staged a similar scene. Gathering their materials from the garbage heaps of Assisi, they made costumes out of rags and hammered a small manger from some old boxes they had found. They stuffed it with hay swept from the streets. Francis then placed a discarded wooden doll into the cradle. Later that night, the story goes, as Francis spoke of the mystery of the word made flesh, the little baby in his arms came to life.