Many years ago, I remember the frustration of trying to convince a resistant horse onto a trailer at a horse show. “Don’t you understand?? This is the only way home!!”(meltdown moment) “If I could only become a horse, I’d show you there’s nothing to be afraid of!”
Come to think of it, that’s the essence of the Christmas story.
Author, Phillip Yancey tells it like this and it always makes me smile. The scene is a senior angel showing a very young angel around the splendors of the universe…
The senior angel pointed to a small and rather insignificant sphere turning very slowly on its axis. It looked as dull as a dirty tennis ball to the little angel, whose mind was filled with the size and glory of what he had seen.
“I want you to watch that one particularly,” said the senior angel, pointing with his finger.
… “What’s special about that one?”
… He listened in stunned disbelief as the senior angel told him that this planet, small and insignificant and not overly clean, was the renowned Visited Planet.
“Do you mean that our great and glorious Prince … went down in Person to this fifth-rate little ball? Why should He do a thing like that?”
…. “Do you mean to tell me,” he said, “that He stooped so low as to BECOME one of those creeping, crawling creatures of that floating ball?”
“I do, and I don’t think He would like you to call them ‘creeping, crawling creatures’ in that tone of voice. For, strange as it may seem to us, He loves them. He went down to visit them to lift them up to become like Him.”
The Apollo astronaut, Jim Lovell, described our small blue-and-green-and-tan globe like this: “It was just another body, really, about four times bigger than the moon. But it held all the hope and all the life and all the things that the crew of Apollo 8 knew and loved. It was the most beautiful thing there was to see in all the heavens.”
Yancey concludes “Could it be true, this Bethlehem story of a Creator descending to be born on one small planet? If so, it is a story like no other. Never again need we wonder whether what happens on this dirty little tennis ball of a planet matters to the rest of the universe.”