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December 2015

by Rev. Kelly Mitteis

A senior angel was showing a junior angel around the immense universe. Viewing the panorama of whirling galaxies and blazing suns, they entered the Milky Way. As the two drew near to the star we call our sun, senior angel pointed out a small planet, third from the sun. I want you to watch that one in particular. Why? Junior asked, What's special about that one? It looks kind of dull and dirty to me. Senior angel explained, That planet, we call the 'Visited' planet. It is the only one that our great and glorious Prince went down to in person. The little angel's face wrinkled in disgust, Why? You mean to tell me that He stooped so low as to become one of the creeping, crawling creatures on that puny ball? Senior answered directly, I do. And I don't think He would like you calling them 'creeping, crawling creatures' with that tone of voice! Strange as it may seem He loves them; so much so that He went down to lift them to become like Him. To the dumbfounded junior angel . . . the thought was incomprehensible.

Luther said that of all the mysteries in life one of the greatest was the Incarnation of our Lord. John writes, And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. And that Christ assumed human nature in the womb of Mary should be a great marvel to us. Like the little angel in the story it is beyond comprehension; indeed a great mystery as we sing in the Advent hymn:
    Savior of the Nations come; virgin's Son make here thy home. Marvel now O heaven and earth, that the Lord chose such a birth.
Marvel now O heaven and earth . . . . David's seems to do just that in Psalm 8 when he asks, What is man that you are mindful of him? Why would God want to help me out when by nature I have been totally rebellious to Him? This is indeed beyond comprehension.

In his letter to the Romans Paul wrote, But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Again it is written, But when the time had fully come God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under law that we might receive the full rights of sons. Marvel now . . . our God had a rescue mission planned out long ago, a rescue promised to Adam and Eve, a deliverance that made way for our restoration as saints of His kingdom. Why would God do such a thing? The answer is love, love that flows from the heart of God to the object(s) being loved, you and me without any merit or worthiness in us at all. That's what Christmas is all about. And it's why we may freely and wisely prepare for the final Advent (coming) of our Lord. Therefore Zion . . . let us watch, prepare, rejoice and behold. So that along with the shepherds we too may declare, O come let us adore Him!

Pastor Kelly Mitteis

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