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Sunday, December 25, 2016

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Isaiah 52:7-10
Hebrews 1:1-6
Psalm 98:1-6
John 1:1-18

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constricted by love

"The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us." —John 1:14

On this great celebration of Christmas, we recall Jesus being constricted for love of us:

  • Jesus, Son of God and Eternal Word of God, Whom the universe cannot contain (2 Chr 6:18), is constricted in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
  • Jesus, through Whom all things came into being (Jn 1:3), accepts the constraints and limitations of a human body.
  • After birth, Jesus was "wrapped in swaddling clothes" (Lk 2:12). These clothes encircled His body, constricting Him.
  • The Baby Jesus was hunted down by the government. His family fled to Egypt. He was constricted through life as a Refugee in a land far from His home (Mt 2:14ff).
  • Jesus was constricted on the cross, the Almighty God pressed to its wood by a few nails.
  • Jesus was constricted again by swaddling clothes. His burial cloths were wrapped around His immobile body.
  • After dying, the body of Jesus was constricted in a tomb.

Why did Jesus submit to these constrictions for our sake? "God is Love" (1 Jn 4:16), and love endures all things (1 Cor 13:7).

Prayer:  Thank You, Jesus, for taking on the constrictions of our humanity so You could set us free in the power of Your resurrection! I join my human life to Yours. I put my life in Your hands.

Promise:  "Any who did accept [Jesus] He empowered to become children of God." —Jn 1:12

Praise:  "For a Child is born to us, a Son is given us; upon His shoulder dominion rests" (Is 9:5). "With the Lord is kindness and with Him is plenteous redemption" (Ps 130:7).

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 10, 2016

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