Advent calls me to remember that Christ came to be one of us. He came to be like us in all the imperfection of our messy lives. Even his human family ancestry reflects this – dotted with misfits and mistake- makers who also experienced grace, forgiveness and hope.
In Gail Godwin’s novel, Evensong, a small town church in the Smoky Mountains is surprised when the local priest has a young teenage girl read the genealogy of Jesus recorded in Matthew instead of the traditional Christmas story in Luke 2. The priest then quotes from an essay titled A Coming of Christ in Advent by Raymond Brown that says the genealogy list in Matthew 1 is “three minutes’ worth of tongue twisting names that contain the essential theology of the Old and New Testaments for the whole Church, Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Protestant alike…If so much powerful stuff can have been accomplished down through the millenia by..people who were such complex mixtures of sinner and saint, isn’t that a pretty hopeful testament to the likelihood that God is using us, with our individual flaws and gifts, in all manner of peculiar and unexpected ways?
“Who of us can say we’re not in the process of being used right now, this Advent, to fulfill some purpose whose grace and goodness would boggle our imagination if we could even begin to get our minds around it?”
Found in Evensong, b