It’s December 26, of all days,
and the very self of God has decided
to visit creation again, en carne.
Forget, for a moment, if you can,
what this time will look like to us;
try to picture what it will look like to God.
In much of the world, it will be
just another day of need:
toil and suffering
in the struggle to survive.
Perhaps the remains
of a meager celebration
from the night before
might be visible
to the trained eye:
a candle and the crumbs
from a small portion
of seldom-splurged-for food.
And then there’s my neck of the woods:
cardboard boxes, brightly colored paper,
ribbon, partially-eaten animal carcasses
and every food imaginable heaped at the curb
as if an omnivore named opulence
has binged and purged on the spot;
people scurrying to hide every vestige
of what’s not discarded from the extravaganza
in attics, garages, and storage buildings for another year
before returning to the security of their compounds.
Where will this generation’s shepherds be found –
those at the margins whose work
is both so menial and odoriferous
that they must be kept at bay?
What will be their response
to the celestial’s visit and proclamation:
“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”?
When they arrive in our neighborhood,
will we recognize them as the favored ones?
Will we join Mary in treasuring
their words in our hearts?
Or will their uniforms and smelly trucks
cause our eyes and hearts to glaze?
If you were playing this like the stock market,
how heavily would you leverage
your portfolio for the future they’re promising.
For more of Todd Jenkins wonderful “Tuesdays Muse” check over here.
We have a chance with each new generation! Our Christmas Eve pageant in Madbury.