Twelfth Day of Christmas
“The way we came to know love is that he laid down his life for us”
We have come to know Love, His face and his name. Christ, He who is Love, laid down his life for us in birth and in death. He laid down his life in the vulnerable straw of the adorable manger, laid out in utter dependence to the love of a Mother. He also laid down his life in death, upon the wood of the Cross and the stone of the Tomb.
“so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers”
What does this mean? If our love ought to look like Christ’s own laying down of his life, then our love for others must also have these two dimensions of birth and death. Our love must be vulnerable: the first sacrifice is the act of trust that is dependence. Our love must also bleed, poured out until it is empty and bruised and rejected by the world.
We prepare for the feast of Epiphany tomorrow, when Christ will reveal himself to all the nations of the world as the incarnate Savior. Over the course of his life, Christ will reveal that the Savior is Love Himself and that we must learn to live anew from the heart. The Magi will honor Christ as King, in his first throne of the manger. His second throne will be the wood of the cross, and his final throne is in our hearts.
Let us ponder how we are being invited by the Holy Spirit today to lay down our lives just as Love did. Let us reflect on how we can interiorize this revelation of the King of Love and make of our hearts a throne for Him.