As we welcome the Christ Child, let us sit with Mary and ponder with her the mystery of God becoming one of us. Instead of being born into wealth and worldly glory, Jesus lies in a manger among the animals. And the angels don't announce the birth to the well-off and those safely asleep in the nearby inns. Instead, they appear to poor shepherds, watching their flocks by night.
As St. Francis of Assisi urged us, let us approach with the shepherds and stand among the animals and watch as Mary cares for her newborn -- lying asleep, helpless, wrapped in simple swaddling clothes.
In the words of Isaiah:
For a child has been born for us,
a son given to us;
authority rests upon his shoulders;
and he is named
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.