Living in God's Mercy - Dec. 24
"We cannot approach the manger of the Christ child in the same way we approach the cradle of another child. Rather, when we go to this manger, something happens, and we cannot leave it again unless we have been judged or redeemed. Here we must either collapse or know the mercy of God directed toward us.
What does that mean? Isn't all of this just a way of speaking? Isn't it just pastoral exaggeration of a pretty and pious legend? What does it mean that such things are said about the Christ child? Those who want to take it as a way of speaking will do so and continue to celebrate Advent and Christmas as before, with pagan indifference. For us it is not just a way of speaking. For that's just it: it is God himself, the Lord and Creator of all things, who is so small here, who is hidden here in the corner, who enters into the plainness of the world, who meets us in the helplessness and defenselessness of a child, and wants to be with us. And he does this not out of playfulness or sport, because we find that so touching, but in order to show us where he is and who he is, and in order from this place to judge and devalue and dethrone all human ambition.
The throne of God in the world is not on human thrones, but in human depths, in the manger. Standing around his throne there are no flattering vassals but dark, unknown questionable figures who cannot get their fill of this miracle and want to live entirely by the mercy of God. "
D. Bonhoeffer I Want to Live These Days With You