on this night, exile is over.

all those excluded
shut out
knocked down and stomped on
too poor, too strung out
hopeless
rejected

are welcomed in.

and
all those bound up
in pretention
perfection
the knowledge and position
privilege and stature

they are welcome, too.

because on this night

the Word that started it all
the Presence that hovered over crashing, chaotic waters
the Creator of all
wraps in flesh and blood
the glory
the fullness

to win us back
to end the war.

you see, we ran far
we ran fast

ears plugged
eyes scrunched tight
kicking blindly in the night
like a toddler pitching and wailing

we ran

but rather than give us our due
leave us
curled up sobbing
massive heap of messed up life
broken dream
frustrated tomorrows

rather than leave
God came.

in fullness
in humility

the Son of suspect teenage mother
grandSon of whores and murderers
outsiders and adulterers

just look back

the strikes mounted
but the promise stood bigger still.

and on this night
it all begins

the promised mission
to win it all
to lead us
to show us what it is to live

like a mother, stooping
ruffling hair
soothing hands across forehead
lifting a gaze from the crumpled heap of human

a baby.
gentle.
muffled cries.

God wrapped
in skin
wrapped again
in cloth
held tight to mother’s breast.

welcomed by outcasts and royals alike.
God comes down to rescue all, this night.

all welcome
to sit in straw and sing the carols of angels
to watch
to learn
as He draws first breath
how to be
how to love
till His dying breath.

exile is over.
we all enter in.
doors flung wide open
by a child in Bethlehem.

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