Love Became Flesh

Compassion became flesh in the two fishermen from Virginia. Generosity became flesh in the lawn guy with a truck. Love became flesh in countless people lined up to help.

The nativity story St. John tells us in today’s gospel is very different from the one we heard St. Luke tell on Christmas Eve. One is not better than the other. They’re just different. We need both.

For Luke it is about Mary and Joseph going to Bethlehem, an angel announcing good news to the shepherds, and Jesus lying in the manger. It is a story about thisness: “this day,” “this thing that has happened,” and “this child.”

For John the story is cosmic. It’s about the Word becoming flesh, light shining in the darkness, and grace upon grace. It’s a creation story, an “In the beginning” story, a story of becoming and the calling forth of life.

In Jesus, the Word became flesh. In his living, and his healing, and his forgiving, and his feeding, and everything he did for others. The Word became flesh.

The incarnation of God, the embodiment of God in human life, the Word become flesh, is the picture, the pattern, the archetype of what the Word become flesh looks like.

And we look at that picture so that we can recognize it in ourselves and one another. 

“…the Word became flesh and lived among us.” 

It did in Jesus. And it did in two fishermen from Virginia. It did in the lawn guy with a truck.

So, what about you and me?