There is a story told of a little boy who was being put to bed by his mother. After she had given him her goodnight kiss, she turned out the light in the room and started for the door. Suddenly, the little boy realised he is alone in the dark. “Am I to be left alone and in the dark too?” the little boy asked worried. “Yes, my dear,” replied the mother, “but you know you have god with you all the time.”
“Yes, I know god is there,” said the boy, “but I want someone who has a face.”
This indeed is the anxious cry of all people down the history. We all know god is here and there and everywhere. But we all long to have a more vivid sense of god’s reality and his presence in our world. Above all, we want to see god and discover him as a real person with an actual life and character. Thus, god sent his only son Jesus Christ in whom we see the face of god and his personal character.
The four Gospels of St Matthew, St Luke, St Mark and St John (Matthew and John were his apostles, who give a personal account of the life of Jesus), the other two write their Gospels based on eyewitnesses. Although the Gospels are not formal biographies of Jesus Christ, they constitute a narrative of the life of Christ. They give us an intimate picture of Christ, his birth, childhood, his teachings, healings and miracles, his passion, crucifixion and the resurrection.
One of the most enduring images of Christ is the fact he was born some 2,017 years ago, in a manger of the dark and lowly cave, used for the shelter of cattle, near the town of Bethlehem in present day Jerusalem in Palestine. God simply chose to be poor. He wanted to share the poverty of the poorest of the poor, the insecurity and all that goes with it and not only be part of them but in fact, be with them in flesh and blood, as it were.
If only our hearts could become a manger today, then god would once again be born in our hearts and be a light to guide us onward to eternal path. Once we allow god to be born and reborn in the manger of our heart, then the Star of Bethlehem will guide us to eternal bliss and life. Merry Christmas!
— Michael Gonsalves