Balzhausen, Leonhardskapelle, Krippe Photo: Andreas Praefcke
May I follow the example of the shepherds. May I hasten to seek God’s Word. May I pay reverence to the most vulnerable of our human family.
When the angels went away from them to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go, then, to Bethlehem to see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” So they went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. Luke 2:15-16
God is with us, God is in charge, God’s vision still has its time. Do not be afraid.
[The angel of the Lord said, “Mary] will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means “God is with us.” Matthew 1:21-23
The Flight into Egypt Attributed to Rembrandt, via Wikimedia Commons
Take care of your father when he is old;
grieve him not as long as he lives.
Even if his mind fail, be considerate of him;
revile him not all the days of his life;
kindness to a father will not be forgotten,
firmly planted against the debt of your sins
—a house raised in justice to you. Sirach 3:12-14
He is so fragile, my father, and every day getting physically smaller as his Spirit outgrows his frail body.
He doesn’t know us any more, but his smile is as sweet as ever and lights up his eyes. “I love you,” he says over and over. He hasn’t lost the inner wisdom that still knows how to “put on love, the bond of perfection.”