He was a Child Once.

 The hand laid kindly upon his shoulder awoke the unfortunate Judah, and, looking up, he saw a face he never forgot – the face of a boy about his own age, shaded by locks of yellowish bright chestnut hair; a face lighted by dark-blue eyes, at the time so soft, so appealing, so full of love and holy purpose, that they had all the power of command and will. The spirit of the Jew, hardened though it was by days and nights of suffering, and so embittered by wrong that its dreams of revenge took in all the world, melted under the stranger’s look, and became as a child’s. He put his lips to the pitcher, and drank long and deep. Not a word was said to him, nor did he say a word. – Ben Hur.

(This is a great passage from Lew Wallance’s novel ‘Ben-Hur’ that says in a few words what I will try with say with an article.)

Christmas is the season and Christ is the reason. Understandably, we tend to focus on the birth of our redemeer but give almost no thought to the time after. After the symbolic birth of the Greatest King in a stable, after the Magi and their example, after Mary, Joseph and Our Lord were forced to flee towards Egypt…

Christ was a child and he was one for you.

Once those words sink in- truly sink in- the depth of Christ’s love and mercy for us expands its horizons in ways that should not be possible. Here’s a God who loves us so ardently and completely that He was a child- a child!- so that His own children would approach Him without fear and with greater trust.

He, the Creator and Lord of everything, decided to take flesh in the womb of a Virgin, to limit Himself to the necessities of a human body and a developing mind. He, the Maker of the sun and the rain, was subject to cold weather and the heat of a summer day. Not only was He limited to the capacities of a human body but to the growth and necessities of a child as well. At the time He was not the Rabbi of Nazareth that performed outstanding miracles and awed the crowd with His words. He was not the suffering and loving Redeemer that died on a cross to save the children He loved so well; there was a time in which he was only just a boy. And He presents to us the true face of God in all its infinite love and tenderness for us, in the pure and soulful expression of a child that would one day become our redeemer. God, the mighty Lord of Mount Sinai, looks upon His children with the sweetness of a small face and the loveliness of a little boy.

The great mystery present in this simple fact – ‘God was once so small that he could have hugged my knees and wrapped his little hand around the smallest of my fingers.’- can inspire such love and trust that we should feel able to run towards him with arms wide open and ready hearts. There, in the reality of Our God as a child, a new and tender beauty is found- a child does not inspire paralyzing fear or hatred, a child is nothing but hugs, kisses and laughs. A child wants nothing else than to sit in your lap and lay his head upon your shoulder. God, the being that is in love with each of His souls, wants nothing else than to know you and love you with the simplicity and kindness of a child.

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