From the Treasury of Daily Prayer, Dec. 29

“God became Man that man might become God!” This truth, cast in parallel phrases, summarized the Christian mystery to the Christians of old. It impinged itself deeply in their spirituality; in almost identical words the truth occurs frequently in the Fathers and in ancient liturgical texts. God assumed a human nature to effect man’s participation in the divine nature; God became a Child that we might become children of God. The birthday of Christ inaugurates our divine birth. With Christ we were born God’s children. God became Man! This truth is utterly incomprehensible to our puny human minds. That the eternal God, whom heaven and earth cannot contain, who bears the world in His hand as a nutshell, before whom a thousand years are as one day–that this eternal, omnipotent God should become Man! Would it not have proved His loving mercy had He appeared for a mere moment in the splendor of His majesty, amid thunder and lightening, as once on Sinai? No! Such would have shown far too little of His love and kindness. He wanted to be like us, to become a child of man, a poor child of poorest people. He wished to be born, in a cave, in a strange land, in hostile surroundings. Cold wind, hard straw, dumb animals–these were there to greet Him. The scene fills with amazement. What can we do, other than fall down in silence and adore! God put on the beggar’s garb, became a tiny, crying Babe in order to offer man His divinity. In paradise, a fallen angel had promised: “Eat of this fruit and you will be like God.” Man ate and became a prisoner of hell. On Christmas night another angel, the Church, stands before man, offers him a Food and says: “Eat of this and you will be like God.” For the divine Food, the Flesh of the incarnate Son of God, makes us “partakers of the divine nature.””

–Pius Parsch

From Treasury of Daily Prayer, December 29