Wish I could freeze time – little feet that toddle, bright eyes seeing all as new – a grandson. I wanted to freeze time with all my children, but it marched on. And here I am, Maam Maam to a little one who finds everything amazing.
I snap picture after picture. I rock a little longer once he falls asleep. Willing time to just slow, for a few more precious moments. And so a young woman must have been bewildered as she held her baby a couple thousand years ago. She knew, like no one else ever would, that this baby was no ordinary child. She did not know all He would do, she wasn’t even sure what all she was to do with Him.
No cameras to capture precious moments, nor a way to stop the clock long enough to take it all in. “But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” (Luke 2:19 NIV)
Things moved fast for Mary and Joseph – not long after His birth Jesus was brought to the temple in the Jewish tradition to be ‘consecrated to the Lord’. First old Simeon comes over and takes Jesus in his arms proclaiming salvation has come for both Israel and the Gentiles. “The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about Him.” (Luke 2:33 NIV)
At that moment gray-haired Anna shuffles over giving thanks to God and telling all who were looking forward to redemption that it had arrived. No rolling cameras, no Instagram, no Facebook to post to. Just two parents and those in earshot – hearing confirmation that God had fulfilled all prophecy – and forever was being offered to all who would believe.
I wonder if Mary held a little tighter with each revelation. Pondering would He be welcomed, royalty, powerful? She could not know the opposite would be true. Selfish man would do all they could to discredit God in the flesh – even try to kill Him.
Mary’s heart must have gone back to treasured heart pictures of baby, child, teen as she witnessed His sacrifice for her and all mankind on the cross. This Christmas will we rush through the decorations, parties, wrapping going every which direction and miss the Gift? Starry nights call us to pause, to slow, to look up and ponder. Snow falls and blue skies beg a moment to show the brilliance of creation. Perhaps it’s time to stop and treasure all these things in our hearts.
“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of darkness a light has dawned….For to us a child is born, to us a son is given…And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:2, 6 NIV)
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