What the incarnation means to some of The Warehouse team….
As Christians, the incarnation- Jesus, who is fully God embodying the full extent of what it means to be human and taking up residence on Earth- is foundational to our faith. In this month of December- this period of advent leading up to the celebration of the birth of Jesus and all that it means- we, as The Warehouse staff, reflected on the significance of the incarnation for us, our faith and our world…
How the incarnation happened and where it happened, is as important for me biblically as the fact of the incarnation. That it happened to Mary who was a poor young teenage girl, and Joseph, who was a carpenter, is important. It locates Jesus socially and economically. Where it happened/the geography of the incarnation- in Palestine, in Bethlehem, in a stable- is just as important. It says to me that God did not just come to be with us as humans, but that God came to be accessible and present- in proximity to pain and suffering and injustice.
The incarnation is a reminder that in a world at war, in a world controlled by empires, this child (Jesus) was born not into the safety net of even a comfortable middle class existence, but rather was born to an oppressed people ruled by a dynasty, and the message is always that Christmas time is an invitation to resist. To resist power, to resist the option of power, and to instead turn our eyes to the ground rather than the heavens to remind ourselves that this is a time of Emmanuel- God with us, not God absent from us.
Incarnation means that Jesus came from where he was, down to where we are, fully taking on all our junk, and giving us full access to the Father.
Incarnation is constantly endangered by all the un-freedoms and unresponsiveness to human pain. If human pain and black groanings continue to be ignored cries, Christ might not be born.
For me the incarnation is a reminder that Jesus is not simply a good human whose example I need to try and emulate; he is the word made flesh. And it is a call to follow Jesus into the forgotten and hurting places of the world.
Jesus came to show us a way of being.
It makes God accessible. He encourages us ‘Come to me’.
God risking vulnerability.
Since before human-recorded time, God has been reaching out to us: loving us, nurturing us, revealing to us both the nature and the dreams of God. Eventually, at a moment in time, God put on skin: pouring out the Indescribable into a form we could understand – that which we could see, hear, touch. Jesus is the full and complete revelation of God: God’s heart towards us, God’s heart towards creation, God’s heart towards the cosmos! It doesn’t get better than the incarnation; God with us.
Thinking about the incarnation reminds me that Jesus is not a far-off God who is removed from suffering and an understanding of this broken world, but he lived in it, under an oppressive government and in a low-income family. He knows and feels the pain and joy of being human, and entered this world as Creator of the universe. It blows me away actually.
We pray that over this season, you would step into greater revelation of the significance of the incarnation and its implications in our daily following of Jesus who, in his relentless pursuit of the restoration of all things, took on humanity and all that it came with.
With love from The Warehouse Team
Inspiration Over Advent
The Warehouse Blog
Mary and the Slaughtered Sheep
Colleen Saunders reflects on Jesus’ birth, his life, and the prophecies that speak of these, and invites us into seeing afresh what following Jesus of Nazareth can and should look like.
The Warehouse Podcast Reimagining the Stories That Hold Us Captive
In this episode of our podcast, Bishop Zac Niringiye speaks about disrupting the narratives which hold power in society through imagining different realities, inspired by the life and example of Jesus.
The work of The Warehouse is largely sustained by individuals that believe in what we do and partner with us financially, often on a monthly basis. Would you consider coming alongside us in this way? Below are a few options through which you can do this.
Get a My School card at your nearest Woolworths store, put ‘The Warehouse Trust’ as your beneficiary, and a percentage of all your purchases from Woolworths, Engen and a couple of other shops, will support our work!
Simply download the snapscan app and set it up, scan this image, and you can give directly into our account!
Visit our website (click on logo for link) for other ways to give, such as EFT or givengain.