But you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, who are one of the little clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to rule in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days. -Micah 5:2
It may come as a surprise (or until now, as a surprise to you) that I am very human. What I mean by this is that I think I know a lot, but I really don’t. I continue to think that I can do things on my own, only to realize that I can’t. I am in constant self-comparison with others. I suffer with self-depleting thoughts which drag me to the lowest of lows. I have hurt family and friends. I have been hurt by family and friends. I carry a chip on my shoulder about a few things. I am as okay as it gets.
I am human.
I am constantly trying to figure out what it means to live life “well.” I have a desire to know and to be known. I want to have a close relationship with myself, others, and God. I am often in places where I laugh and experience great joy, but also places of deep sorrow and pain. I press what I think is right onto people and expect them to go along with it. I forget what it means to love sometimes, but I also have experienced deep love, both given and received. I am gifted.
Don’t get me wrong; like all other humans, I have been created in the goodness and likeness of God to live fully. In the book of Micah, we hear a prophetic word from a real human speaking to other real humans whose spirits were crushed as their humanity got the best of them. This word continues to resonate with us today, specifically during Advent. It’s more than just a surface level communication, but rather a proclamation. It tells me that things aren’t okay, but yet they are okay, and they’re definitely going to be okay in time.
The struggles that I am confronted with and the joys that spring forth are met in this place where somehow, some way Jesus is coming. One whose origin is from old. One who transcends time and space with an abiding presence. A God who meets us, through both flesh and spirit, right where we are. A Holy collaboration between the human and the divine that somehow, some way, saves us every day. Emmanuel, God who is with us.
This is Good News. This is a heck of a birth announcement for me, you, and all of us humans.
May God’s humanity touch your humanity this season in whatever state or place you find yourself. May you be reminded through Jesus of your creation, a creation that screams both love and beloved. May you experience the fullness of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love in your life with God this Advent season.