No Shortcuts

by DanWolgemuth on November 2, 2018

On October 22nd I held Mack William Horst in my arms for the first time. He was hours old and beautiful. All 10 pounds and 3 ounces of him. My grandson.

As I held him, I stared, and as I stared, I marveled at the magnanimous gift of life. Mack’s mom, our daughter Alli, was sitting just a few feet away. Alli and her husband, Chris, oozed with delight.

Mack, on the other hand was oblivious to the celebration, the joy, the photography, the laughter and the complete sense of awe that filled the room at Rose Medical Center. Mack, although testing his own lungs for the first time, was completely and utterly dependent on those around him. For comfort, for warmth, for food, for safety… for everything. His birth, while glorious, was an introduction to vulnerability. An on-ramp to total dependence.

Everyone in the room knew this, expected it, and were well prepared.

As I continued to gaze into the face of this infant I had just met, all the while feeling a sense of love that typically takes years to cultivate… I couldn’t help but think about the astounding reality of the birth of Christ. I’ve pondered and preached on His sacrificial love that the Apostle Paul highlights in Philippians 2, but what of Christ’s journey to complete vulnerability.

God, now a human… and yes, now an infant. And on top of all of that, He was placed in the arms of a teenaged mother on her maiden voyage. Jesus, testing His lungs for the first time. Jesus, every bit as dependent and helpless as Mack.

God’s mind-boggling gift to mankind, His plan for restoration, His design for rescue didn’t parachute onto the scene in full battle regalia. No, God in the flesh meant a baby in all of His vulnerability. A baby, wrapped in strips of cloth and nestled in the arms of inexperience.

Yes, Jesus was the perfect lamb of God. He was a sinless sacrifice for the foolishness of our sin. He was the miracle working, Pharisee defying, evil spirit rebuking, meal preparing, water walking Savior of the world… but first, He was a baby. Omnipotent, but dependent. Omniscient, but with brand new neurons. The Alpha and Omega, nursing at the breast of a young Jewish mother.

Fully God. Fully man. No shortcuts.

Mind bending truth. Hope producing condescension.

From vulnerability, a message to the vulnerable. From weakness, hope for the weak.

Such amazing love. Such incomprehensible humility.

No shortcuts.

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