"He looks at the babe in the manger and sees a knight ... not because he sees the Christ-child as inhumanly powerful, but because the baby's vulnerability and weakness are his weapons.... God at war is a baby.... 'his battering shots are babish cries.' " (Diane Vincent, Associate Professor at Torrey Honors Institute, Biola University)
"In love he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ." (Ephesians 1:4-5)Today a friend introduced me to a South African ministry called 1hope4Africa, which operates an orphanage called the Muphamuzi Baby Home. According to Unicef, there are approximately 3.7 million orphans in South Africa, about half of whom lost their parents to AIDS-related disease.
Around the world, orphans (some of whom are children who have escaped this world's growing embrace of abortion) wait to be adopted. During Advent, we wait (at least symbolically) for the birth of a child who will change that world.
How will He change the world? By changing us, if we allow Him to.
How will He change us? By transforming us into adopted children of His own Father, "so that we might exist for the praise of His glory, we who first hoped in Christ" (Ephesians 1:12).
And how do we "praise ... His glory"? According to St. James in his letter "to the twelve tribes," we sincerely praise him when we "care for orphans and widows in their affliction," or anyone else who is vulnerable and needs our help.
"The baby's vulnerability and weakness are his weapons" -- whether the "baby" is an orphan or, with his parents, poor or homeless -- weapons against our empty praise.