Common Christmas

There she was. A 14-year-old girl, sitting – or maybe kneeling – face to face with an angel. And she had just heard the most incredible news. She was going to be a mom.

But she was confused. She knew the dynamics, birds and bees and whatnot. So she was right to ask, “How can this be?”

Then the words came back…

“You will be overshadowed by the Almighty…”
“God will be the Father…”
“The child will be called the Son of God…”
“And His name will be…”

Yes! The name! This was the great part. In her culture, the name was everything. It would be a symbol of the child’s essence, a one-word description of the essential nature of His character. So she held her breath a little bit, wondering what this miracle child would be called.

“His name will be… Jesus.”

Really? Jesus? It was a great name to be sure, and it had a great meaning – The Lord is Salvation. It was just a little, well, a little ordinary. Half the kids in Hebrew school would be named Jesus. It would be the equivalent of being named “John” or “Joe” in this century. It just felt… common.

Maybe it should be Maximus. Or just straight Caeser. Something regal. Something befitting a child of this magnitude. Not Joe.

But that’s how God works, isn’t it? Think about it – He infuses the ordinary with the extraordinary; the common with the uncommon. This child, who would not be extraordinarily tall, or handsome, or athletic, who would seem ordinary, is completely unique. And this child would be born into the most common of circumstances, a manger with everyday animals looking on, to completely ordinary parents, would redeem the world. Jesus comes into the ordinary and makes it extraordinary.

And He’s still doing it. He came into me, and into you, the most common of people, and made us uncommon. He made us children of God. And in this ordinary day in Nashville, He will enter in and make hundreds of common moments uncommon.

Jesus it is. The name fits.

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