I think most of us recognize Christmas’s message of giving to others and valuing time with family, but there’s a deeper, more profound message that I think many of us don’t fully recognize–and thats its message of humility.
Think about it, Christmas was created to celebrate the fact that God Himself came down to earth as a baby to live among us!
Do we fully grasp what this means?
When I think of a baby, I think of tiny, chubby little human that is totally dependent on others and helpless on its own. It cannot feed itself, clothe itself, or even move itself! It has no right to be prideful or arrogant because it has no power to do anything!
And that’s what’s so amazing about Christmas–The Almighty God of the Universe was willing to humble Himself to the point where He made Himself in our likeness as a meek and helpless child in order to save us!
This example of humility convicts me to the core. For if there’s one thing I’ve always struggled with, it’s pride.
The fact is that I’ve done very little to get what I have. In fact, everything I do have is a result of God’s hand in my life and the people He has put around me.
Unfortunately, I tend to prefer to believe that I somehow “earned” what I have myself–making me somehow more “important” and/or “wiser” than others.
Then I’m reminded during Christmas time each year what God did.
Unlike me, God has earned the right to be glorified, praised, and worshiped for what He has done. He didn’t have to humble Himself. He didn’t have to come down to earth in the most meekest of ways. And He didn’t have to die a humiliating and barbaric death on a cross.
But He did.
He did because our God is a God who doesn’t leave us to fend for ourselves. Our God is Emmanuel–God with us. That’s to say He longs to be in relation to us. To know us. And to save us.
And He was willing to humble Himself to become one of us and physically show us the way. I think the apostle Paul said it better than I ever could…
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus. Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death–even death on a cross!”–Philippians 2: 5-8
Jesus Christ had every right to be prideful. To not associate with anyone because He was better than them (after all, He was God!). Instead, however, He came to earth as a helpless baby in a lowly manger. Where eventually He grew into a man who dwelt among the most humble among us (the poor, the downtrodden, the dirty, and the “sinners”) and proceeded to die a criminal’s death on a cross.
If God Himself could come down to earth and associate with us in such a humble and loving way, what is stopping insignificant old me from doing so? As Paul continues in his letter to the Philippians…
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.”–Philippians 2: 3
May I keep these things in mind when I’m feeling entitled, proud, or rightful:
Jesus Christ humbled Himself for me. Can I not do the same for others?