Omnipotence and Impotence: The Wonder of the Incarnation

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I joined my church congregation recently in singing about the "Darling of Heaven, crucified." Together we proclaimed "Worthy is the Lamb, seated on the throne."

Those words struck a new chord as I thought about the Incarnation, when Jesus, eternal God, a spirit, took on flesh. Jesus reigned in heaven before he came to earth. He created the universe. The angels and saints adore and worship him without ceasing. He truly is the "Darling of heaven."

But Jesus chose to leave all that. He emptied himself and put on flesh. And the Word became flesh and dwelled among us. This creator of the universe, who holds the stars in their place, who guards our very lives—He emptied Himself and became an infant. An infant has no power, no authority, no control. A newborn can't even hold his head up, let alone decide where he goes or what he does.

Yet Jesus chose, as the maker of His parents, to subjugate Himself to them—to entrust Himself to their care and authority—and become a baby. So that he could grow up and, as a human speaking to humans, fully communicate God's love. So that one day He could redeem us and offer us adoption as children of God.

G.K. Chesterton says it well: "Omnipotence and impotence, or divinity and infancy, do definitely make a sort of epigram which a million repetitions cannot turn into a platitude."

Omnipotent God took on the impotence of a baby. Jesus, divine, put on powerless infancy. The Incarnation will never be a platitude. It is a mysterious reality that each year makes us bow down and say "God, you are amazing."

May we look upon what Jesus did and say, "May Your mystery, love and salvation shine ever brighter in our lives and in this world."

Blessings to you,

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  1. I don't know that we will ever understand it... it can never be a platitude, and it is very amazing when you stop to think about it. It's nice that during the Christmas season so many take the time to think on these things and consider Christ. And blessings to you, too, Sarita! :)