What Do You See When You Look Into the Manger?

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6

Through the curtains of time, Isaiah looked into the Manger and saw a Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace. A child is born to us.

This child would be special, what new mother looks into the face of her child and sees what he or she will become or in what way the child will impact others? New mothers look into the faces of their newborn child, and see the needs of the child, count their toes, hold their fingers. When Mary looked into the face of her son, Jesus, what did she see? As she sat near the manger where her child lay, what did she see? When the shepherds came from the field to find the babe to worship Jesus and told all they heard from the angels, it is no wonder that the Scripture says, But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. (Luke 2:19)

The Wise Men came from the far east, how far, no one knows. Yet they came, mile and mile. What did they see when they looked in the manger? They saw King Jesus and worshipped Him. They gave gifts fit for a king to the baby boy. The wonder and amazement and worship of their child must have made Joseph and Mary take a second look into the manger, even as we do in this season.

As Jesus’ brief time on the earth unfolded, Joseph and Mary saw their son, the Son of God, teaching, greeted with praise and adulation, they saw him arrested, persecuted, dying on the cross, a most horrible death. They saw his closest companions desert their son. Did they wonder why? Ord did they know?

When I was a child, I learned about the baby Jesus. I saw a sweet baby child as I looked into the manger. I saw my family celebrate Christmas on their knees, praying to Jesus. Later I looked into the manger and I saw the price my family paid in order to have the freedom to worship Jesus many generations ago. They traveled many miles, for they knew that in Jesus is the freedom of more than the body, a freedom of the soul. When they looked into the manger, despite heartache, hunger, physical fear, hard labor, they saw with their hearts the babe, the Savior of the world, the everlasting Father.

When I look into the manger, I see more than earthly governments, or comforts of the body, I see everlasting life and the fruit of the spirit that comes only through seeing in the manger with the heart.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

During this season, what do you see in the manger? Do you see selfishness or greed? Do you see fear, lies and hate? Look again, with your heart, look into the manger and see the Christ Child, your Saviour, Comforter, Shepherd, the one who died on the cross for our sins. Do you see the Giver of Life Eternal?
When I Look Into the Manger, I See….

I see rainbows and fireflies,

joy and tears

Sorrow and suffering,

whales and seals

I see freedom and laughter,

an abstract of color and emotion.

A window into heaven,

the past, and my future

I see stars and rivers,

shadows and light

What life can be

when Jesus was born that night.

I see truth that slays lies.

Honor that defies evil,

Hope that gives life,

Trust that holds me from strife.

What do you see

What do you see?

With more than your eyes,

When you look into the manger.

What do you see

What do you see?

Look with your heart

When you look into the manger.

EAC 12/21/09