small: Jesus made himself less than to be like one of us


Do you feel small sometimes? It can be hard to fit within society’s constraints and confines. We’ve all felt boxed in by other people’s opinions, their flawed idea of who we are. It hurts to feel small, set aside or marginalised. We feel the sting shredding away at our worth.

Advent invites us to think about the infant Jesus, divinely conceived in Mary’s womb, helpless and tiny as all newborns are. But if we leave our thoughts of God at the manger, we are in danger of making Him too small, too sweet and too slight to be of any significance to us.

Jesus took on human flesh and allowed Himself to be made small in order to reveal the greatness of God to us via His life and painful, surrendered death on a cross. He came to rise again and grant heaven’s grace to unworthy sinners just like us. A gift beyond price. Eternal compassion writ larger than life itself.

Like one of us

He seems too small and insignificant, this suckling infant groping
for sustenance, too tiny to count for much, too little to be able to slay
demons at a word, make miracles occur, heal the sick, feed hungry
and thirsty in mind, body and soul, help the broken become whole

He’s a dependent, drooling, crying child who has no say in anything, yet
is in fact the incarnate Word who breathed creation into being and made
everything that has been made, including the shining stars he scattered
into space, and these people who watch over him with wonder, sore amazed

Their finite minds cannot conceive his immaculate conception
wrought through Spirit touching flesh, no man’s assistance, only that
of Father God, who planned in advance for the way his only begotten
Son would one day become like one of us, though he is perfect, sinless

For now he blinks his eyes, squints at emerging daylight, knowing only a
mother’s arms of love cradling him with such tenderness, mixed with sweet
awareness growing inside her mind, that this babe is Messiah, no longer
kicking inside her but wriggling, sighing, nestling close, real and alive

If it hurts our sensibilities to think we might be less than in any way, we might want to consider  how “our God” became “contracted to a span” and was “incomprehensibly made man” as the lines from Charles Wesley’s hymn ‘Our God Contracted to a Span’ state.

As we ponder the wonder of the child born to us at Bethlehem, let’s try to include the awe of our Majestic God deliberately making Himself small for us, that we might know His might and power, His endless love, His mercy, grace and exceeding goodness in our ordinary, everyday lives. Let’s worship Him for being our risen, ascended Lord and Saviour of the world.

13 thoughts on “small: Jesus made himself less than to be like one of us

  1. Dear Joy,
    This is exquisite, and full of such beauty. I am in awe when I pause to really think about how God allowed Himself to be humbled, to send His Son, His very Word, into our time and space. And how that touches me when I face things that feel so humbling to me. He truly is here with me, understanding better than I ever could! Thank you so much for sharing today. Love and Hugs and Blessings to you my friend!

    • Dear Bettie, it warms my heart to think you have found beauty in these words. Because how do we really express the inexpressible? Or try to define the awesome wonder of Love come down? Praise God for gifting us beyond measure with His glorious Son! It certainly is a humbling thought to consider how Jesus deliberately and willingly made Himself small and weak for us. It gives us such Hope and encouragement in our own human frailty to know that God fully understands how it feels. Blessings, love and hugs to you! xoxo

  2. Tears pool in my eyes as I read this, Joy. My heart is awed that Jesus “allowed Himself to be made small in order to reveal the greatness of God to us.” Such love and grace! Love and hugs to you!

    • Oh Trudy, I know. It never ceases to be extraordinary, never mind ‘Good News’, that tugs at our hearts and makes us cry when we think about it. We just can’t comprehend the extent of God’s lavish love for us or how eagerly He runs after our hearts. May we continue to be awed and amazed by such heavenly grace! Love and hugs to you, dear friend! xo 💜

  3. Your words remind me of our visit today at the hospital where my daughter will have our first grandchild next month (Lord willing!). Babies are such fragile little things, yet they bring such hope and promise to us! Have a merry Christmas, Joy!

    • Hi Lisa. Oh a new grandchild for you soon, how lovely! Newborns are a marvel, reminding us of tender fragility mixed with the fierce, protective love they evoke in us. May the Hope and promise of Christmas be enhanced for you as you anticipate the arrival of your new family member. Thanks for stopping by. It’s a blessing to see you here, my friend! 😊💜

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