How many kings step down from their thrones?
How many lords have abandoned their homes?
How many greats have become the least for me?
And how many gods have poured out their hearts
To romance a world that is torn all apart
How many fathers gave up their sons for me?
I am blessed.
Rarely a day goes by that I don’t count my little corner of the world – my wife and kids, my family and friends, my church, my job and my health – a blessing. But I am never fooled. It doesn’t take much more than a peek inside my little world and the bigger one I belong to beyond to see it is all broken.
I listened to a news story this week about a man who beat up a young female teacher in a local school parking lot as she was heading into work, sending her to the hospital with serious head injuries, and I was reminded the world is broken.
On a drive back from Maryland yesterday I listened to our elected officials discuss strategies of dealing with a world leader they fear is prepared to unleash deadly chemical weapons on his own people, and I was reminded the world is broken.
These same elected officials are engaged in conversations about how to resurrect a failing economy and avoid a “fiscal cliff” that in their infinite wisdom they imposed as an alternative to compromise. An alternative that will send the people who elected them over the cliff, not the elected. I am reminded that the world is broken.
For dinner last night I brought home a haul of Mexican food for Katie and me and McDonalds for the boys, fully aware of those who won’t have dinner this week, and was reminded again the world is broken.
There are diseases and natural disasters, many of which we are not far removed from our blame, and they are reminders the world is broken.
I’m afraid I spend too little time being a repairman for the world, even though in the Christmas story I was given every tool I would ever need to be so.
I look at the Christmas story and I see the gift of the Christ child and with it the path to eternal life. For those of us who battle through this broken world and wonder where does it all end, that is a very precious and comforting gift. But in that Christmas story God also sent us the key to winning the present-life battle. I don’t see that key in the story enough. I use it even less.
I look at the broken world I described above and I ask myself: what one word could I incorporate into my life that would most change the world. My guess is many would immediately reach for the word “love”. I don’t suppose I would have good reason to argue that, other than I’m not sure we all agree on what it means to “love”. I look at the story of how God came to this earth and the word “humble” comes to mind. I looked it up in the dictionary and found this:
to lower in condition, importance, or dignity; abase.
I read that and asked myself: how much of my life is spent fighting for my own living conditions, my own self-importance and my own dignity?
How much of my life is spent fighting for the same for others?
What if for a day I devoted every second of my energy for the conditions of others, to make others felt a sense of importance and that they had dignity? What if for a day we all did that? Would the world be any less broken?
In the song below you’re going to hear about a God that humbled himself completely for the good of us all. And maybe in doing so he was not only delivering the path to eternal life, but also giving us the secret to this life that we spend so much time looking for.