Friday, December 20, 2013

as we prepare: may your soul become a nativity

"As December approached, I sat by the wooden nativity set that clustered under our Christmas tree and thought over the last year of my life, the year of waiting. Are we places of nativity too? I wondered. Once, when I visited a monastery around Christmas, I passed a monk walking outside the church. 
“Merry Christmas,” I said. 
“May Christ be born in you,” he replied.  
I thought that a very peculiar greeting at the time, and I never forgot it. Now, all these years later, sitting beside the Christmas tree, I felt the impact of his words. The moment affirmed to me all over again what the real essence of spiritual transformation is all about: it’s realizing more of our inner Christ-nature; it’s discovering our soul and letting Christ be born from the waiting heart. In the passage of emergence, as the birthing begins, the soul becomes a nativity. 
The whole Bethlehem pageant starts up inside us. An unprecedented new star shines in our darkness—a new illumination and awareness. God sends Wisdom to visit us, bearing gifts. The shepherding qualities inside us are summoned to help tend what’s being born. The angels sing and a whole new music begins to flat in the spheres. Some new living, breathing dimension of the life of Christ emerges with a tiny cry that says, I am. One of the best parts of the whole drama is that it happens in the dung and the straw of our life, just as it happened in the dung and straw of Bethlehem. Birthing Christ is an experience of humility."

~Sue Monk Kidd, “When the Heart Waits: