A few days ago I stumbled on this video of the singer Jewel going to a Karaoke bar with a ‘few friends from work’. Prior to going she had been made up to look a lot more ‘plain jane’ than she really is and in the bar she plays ‘Karen’, the shy quiet girl who needs to be coaxed into giving karaoke a go.
Of course as she steps up to sing she chooses one of her own songs and then proceeds to blow people away with her amazing voice. She is called for an encore and then returns to sing another of her songs – still undercover. She leaves amid a group of people amazed at her obvious talent – they are asking ‘who is this girl?!’
A little while later she returns minus make up – as herself and as she gets up to sing people realise it actually is her – she just wasn’t obvious on the first pass.
It’s not unlike the incarnation – the event we celebrate at this time of year when God entered the world as a baby – and many were oblivious. He lived among us, had a job, and did all the usual things blokes do. But he sailed largely under the radar.
It was only in his early 30s as he announced his identity and his mission that the penny began to drop – but only for some.
This is the Messiah – the son of God – the king of the world.
He had come among us virtually undetectable – there was nothing special or grand in his appearance that we would say ‘wow’. He was just a very ordinary man – but behind that appearance lived the son of God – the one who would take away the sins of the world.
And now we are his body here on earth – the ones who carry his name and bear his likeness. Perhaps we can learn from that video, that it’s better to surprise people with our actions before we make any announcements about our identity.
That will come but how much better if the first experience is one of ‘wow!
That’s Hamo’s Christmas thought for 2019…