Man was added to Him, God not lost to Him; He emptied Himself not by losing what He was, but by taking to Him what He was not. ~Augustine
Look upon the baby Jesus. Divinity may terrify us. Inexpressible majesty will crush us. That is why Christ took on our humanity… that he should not terrify us but rather that with love and favor he should console and confirm.” ~Martin Luther
He was pushed out to take his first breath on earth, birth-bloodied, then cradled and held in human arms.
Three decades later, He was pulled down following His last breath, death-bloodied, cradled and held in human arms.
The symmetry of His birth and death mirrors the symmetry of our lives, a consolation that He belongs to us as much as we belong to Him.
The blood shed at birth is his mother’s alone. The blood lost at death is God’s alone, pumping through broken human heart and arteries, soaking the wretched ground below.
He empties wholly because He is fully human; He returns risen and whole because He is fully God.
We, who would be terrified, are deeply loved: cradled, consoled and comforted by such inexpressible divinity emptied into our humanity.
…whenever you mark a horse, or a dog,
with a peculiarly mild, calm, deep-seated eye, be sure he is an Aristotle or a Kant,
tranquilly speculating upon the mysteries in man. No philosophers so thoroughly comprehend us as dogs and horses.
They see through us at a glance.
But there is a touch of divinity ….
and a special halo about a horse… ~Herman Melville from Redburn: His First Voyage
There are some animals (and people) who will not look you in the eye. It may be a reluctance to appear too bold, as direct eye contact can imply, or it may be a reluctance to expose too much of their own inner world and feelings.
Because eyes don’t lie.
But when you can empty yourself into another being’s eyes and feel both understanding and understood, that is a touch of divinity at work. The eye is a mirror, a gazing ball and a collecting pool, and we reveal, reflect and absorb when we really take the time and gather the courage to look deeply into one another.