When I was a kid, the garage in our house in California had a cool little clubhouse in the rafters. You had to climb a ladder to get there (which was really fun), and there was a small area, just big enough for two people (at most) to sit and look out the small window down to the street. We took books and snacks up there. It was awesome.
One day, when the garage door was open, a small bird flew into the garage, and as it was flying about, it made its way up into our clubhouse. It kept flying into the window, trying to escape. It could have easily escaped by flying back down into the garage and flying out the open garage door. But it couldn't figure that out. And after several bumps into the window, it just sat in the clubhouse area and didn’t move. It was terrified, I’m sure. And probably injured.
Robyn and I brainstormed for a while on how to get it out of there. Do we climb up and just grab it? No way, we said. Too scary. Do we break the window from the outside so it can fly out? Nope, too dangerous for the bird, and us. Do we throw things at it until it flies down? Can’t do it. We were stumped.
After being unable to figure anything out that wouldn’t hurt the bird, I remember thinking: “I wish I could BECOME a bird, just for a little while. I would gain his trust, and then lead him to safety.”
Of course, we couldn’t do that. And eventuallymy dad came and shooed the thing out with a broom stick(nicely).
But it wasn't until years later that I realized the significance of that thought: becoming a bird to save a bird.
Friends: that’s Christmas!
Our’sis a broken world that’s just like that bird: we’re stuck in the rafters, and we keep slamming ourselfinto the window, unable to save ourselves. And no matter what kind of help is offered: all the advice, all the self-help books, all the wise leaders and strong governments, ALL of it has been unable to save us.
And Jesus - the eternal Word - became a human being to lead us to salvation. It’s like me becoming a bird. But Jesus didn’t take on flesh just to give some quick advice and hit the road. He did so knowingHe’d suffer greatly at the hands of the people He was there to save, giving up His life for us all.
Brethren: this Christmas, be sure to take a moment to ponder the glorious thought that Jesus “became the bird” for you and for me. He rescued us,and continues to rescue us every day, often with us kicking and screaming along the way.
That’s our God. That’s what we celebrate at Christmas. What a Savior!