I thought I might do a little something, this year, that would help me focus on what this season is really about, and maybe it could help you, too. I’m going to take the story of Jesus’s birth, found in Luke 2, and go verse by verse, 1 through 24, to see what happens. Here we go…
An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. ~ Luke 2:9 NIV
Our very first trip to Disney World was when our girls were 6 and almost 9. They were mesmerized by just about everything, and so were we. That first trip is magical, no matter what age you are. We were waiting to see Cinderella in her castle, having been among the very fortunate to get seats at the Royal Table for dinner.
While we were waiting, there was another family that came in for their reservation, seemingly unaware that Cinderella was due at any moment. They hadn’t been there when the announcement was made, so they were just waiting to be seated. Their little girl was probably about 4, and dancing around their feet as little girls do when they’re antsy and trying their best to keep themselves occupied.
Just as she was spinning around for the 20th or so time, she stopped short, for in the time it took for her to make her last spin, Cinderella, herself, had come in and stood right behind her. She was caught completely off guard, and in a mix of shock and awe, she started to visibly tremble, falling to her knees in the process, and burying her face in her hands. Caught totally by surprise by the presence of royalty, she was overcome by a fit of awestruck terror.
Cinderella was not an angel. She was not a messenger of God. However, larger than life, in a spectacle of royal light, she would’ve seemed like one to that unsuspecting little girl. I think the fear she felt in the moment was not unlike what the shepherds felt out in the field that night when the angel came to call. To a much larger degree, certainly, but awestruck terror nonetheless.
We’ve become a society that is not surprised by much anymore. We seem to have become numb to a lot of things that would’ve found earlier generations quaking. But it would behoove us to tremble in the presence of the Holy God, who holds our very existence in His Hand. It would be wise to humble ourselves before Him in a fit of awestruck terror.
Perhaps today, in the midst of busily making spirits bright, you can fall to your knees in the midst of The Spirit.
Perhaps today is the day to allow yourself to be overcome.
Let all the earth fear the Lord; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him! ~ Psalm 33:8 ESV