a muffled sob at midnight
a “Help me!” filling the dark alley with terror
a fist banging on the door
a numb, blank stare and a hand, clenching and unclenching a ball of tissue
a sudden lurch and collapse, facedown in the open field
This is how it begins, what we call Christmas.
Salvation is summoned by its negation.
The Savior is called forth by the raw expression
of the creation’s need,
that rises from the shattering
collision of what is with what should be.
Christmas begins when God hears
And God heard the voice of the boy… Gen 21:17
I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Ex 3:7
Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard. Luke 1:13
Christmas begins when God sees
I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt. Ex 3:7
My tears will flow without ceasing, without respite until the Lord from heaven looks down and sees. Lamentations 3: 49-50
She answered God by name, praying to the God who spoke to her, “You’re the God who sees me!” “Yes, he saw me; then I saw him!” That’s how the desert spring got named God-Alive-Sees-Me Spring. Genesis 16: 13-14