How big is baby Jesus?
Answering the telephone at The Salvation Army two weeks before Christmas, the caller asked “How big is baby Jesus?” “Pardon?”, I replied. Again the same question, “How big is baby Jesus?”
It turned out to be Bob, who was making a manger for the nativity play and needed to know how long the doll was that would represent Jesus, so that he could make the right size crib.
Admittedly we don't spend much time wondering how much baby Jesus weighed, whether He was born with hair, what colour He was and if He looked much like Mary. Perhaps we get our image from Christmas cards, or simply have a picture in our minds of “a baby”.
What if the baby didn't grow?
Whilst the thought of Jesus as a baby gives us a warm glow at Christmas, despite the poor conditions of the stable, we can be inclined to leave Him as a baby. We would be worried if the baby in our family stayed the same size and did not develop, and would soon be consulting a doctor. But are we content to leave Jesus as a baby and only for Christmas?
How big is Jesus in my life?
Perhaps the question we should consider is “How big is Jesus in my life?” Not the Jesus that came as a baby, but the one who died on the cross to save us from our sins, took on the punishment that was rightly ours and who reconciled us to God. Or as The Bible puts it, “He is the one who died to cleanse us and clear our record of sin”. (Hebrews 1: 3 The Living Bible)
This year perhaps we should resolve to get to know Jesus the man, find out more about His teaching, how to live a better life that has its focus on God and “loving our neighbour as ourselves”. St Paul spoke in one of his letters about the early Christians still being baby believers, so perhaps there is a challenge here for all of us to deepen our relationship with God and Jesus.
The last word
Oh and let the baby grow up!