“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” - Isaiah 9:6
My kids ask amazing questions about God. My recent favourite was a couple of nights ago when Norah, nearly asleep, said “Mum, does God wear a bowtie?”. My response, with laughter stifled, was “I don’t know sweetie, but that would be cool”. I often watch as our girls try to understand God. They process the things we tell them about God and who he is through their understanding of the world. “Why can’t I see God with my eyes?”… “Is God really big?”… “Does God wear a bowtie?”
On some level that’s what we all do, isn’t it? We struggle to understand things that don’t make sense through our lens of the world and we cling to the things that do. This is part of what makes the gift of Jesus so incredible; we can understand him (or at least parts of him). He came to translate God and his Kingdom to us through our worldly eyes. He probably didn’t wear a bowtie, but if he were born in a different time then maybe!
A different night, while putting the girls to bed (all the best convos seem to happen at that time of the day), somebody asked “Mum, why can’t we see God?”. I responded by trying to explain the Holy Spirit to them and quickly realised this was probably too complicated of an approach at 4 and 6! So I gave them each a hug and said “Do you feel that? The feeling inside when I hug you?” They did. And I said, “That’s love. That’s what God feels like.” Anytime we feel love, peace, joy… we know that’s God.
So this Christmas, as you reflect on the incredible gift of Jesus, gather with those you love or give gifts that bring joy to those around you, remember that the full hearts we have as we do these things are from God. The peace, joy and love that we feel are a part of the gift of Jesus to our broken and hurting world.
Merry Christmas All Saints whānau! May every one of you be able to feel God deeply in this season and have eyes to see his Kingdom all around us.