The paradox of Christmas. Leading to and bound together with the cross, the bull's eye center of history and of this whole entire glorious creation that we run round every day.
The twists and turns and darkness and then the blinding surprise of joy round the roughest, darkest corner of all. And now our deep and yet yearning satisfaction. Our God delights in doing the unexpected, and His incredible goodness spills out over His creation.
And then there's Matthew 1:23 that knocks me breathless every time I try to really grab hold of it, "Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel," which is translated, “God with us.”
God with us.
God in the flesh. A crying, hungry baby. Growing up and going to the cross for the salvation of the world. God the Son now reigning at His Father's right hand over the nations and hearing the prayers of His people. Knowing His people. Intimately. Knowing, as only the Shepherd can, all the deepest darkest corners around which He is leading us. Knowing, too, the blinding joy waiting on the other side. Joy to explode our hearts and minds if we had not been prepared and tested through the valleys. For He is creating us anew in His own image, always.
Our Great King has come in the flesh and it is earthshaking -- cause for the very greatest and highest joy indeed!