“The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.” (ESV)
Joseph Shulam is a pastor in Jerusalem. He tells a strange-but-powerful story that sears the true meaning of Christmas into your mind.
One day after coming home, a young boy took off his clothes and went into the back yard. He refused to speak to anyone. All he would do was scuttle around acting like a turkey, gobbling.
It actually sounds kind of funny at first. But imagine if that happened to someone in your family! It would be terrifying. And it wasn’t a 10-minute joke. He kept doing it. Something was clearly wrong.
Doctors nor therapists could help.
But then a family friend came over and did something no one expected.
He took off all his clothes and went into the backyard. He got down on all fours and started acting and talking like a turkey.
After a few days, the family friend scuttled over to the boy and asked if, gobble, gobble, it would be okay, gobble, gobble, if turkeys wore a shirt. The boy nodded his head in agreement. So they put on their shirts.
Later, he went over and asked the boy if, gobble, gobble, it would be okay, gobble, gobble, if turkeys wore pants. The boy nodded his head. So they put on their pants.
Soon they both started walking upright and moved back into the house. The boy started talking again and returned to health.
Here’s what happened. A neighbour took off his clothes and got down to the boy’s level to relate to him, to show him he loved him, and to guide him back to a whole, healthy life as someone who knew something about his experience.
That’s what happened—and what happens—at Christmas.
Jesus takes off his heavenly garments and comes into the world on our level to relate to us, to show us God loves us, and to guide us back to a whole, abundant life. He can do this with power because he knows what it’s like.
I don’t mean to call you a turkey, but it’s kind of what we are. And God won’t stop at anything to come after us, show his love, and guide us back to the abundance he has planned for us.
So yes, we’re turkeys. And there’s nothing that anyone anywhere can do to help…
By Matthew Ruttan
- Vacation alert: Please also note that the “Up!” devo is taking a vacation next week and will return on Tuesday, January 3rd. Merry Christmas!