CHRISTMAS, A LOVELY LOVE STORY
Asked in his old age what he considered the one problem that the world still needed an answer for, Albert Einstein replied, “Is the universe friendly?”
He certainly did not have volcanoes earthquakes and tsunamis in mind when he queried about the friendliness of the universe/nature. His question was directed towards you, me and us together. Are we loving and lovable? Are we tolerant? And, indeed, are we at peace with ourselves and with one another? “Glory to God in the highest, and peace to people on earth”, was how the celestial choir broke the good tidings of the birth of Jesus to the shepherds keeping watch over their sheep on a winter night more than 2000 years ago. Tonight, choirs in all the Churches around the world will sing the same verses.
Nearly 2000 years ago, the same question held. The world had its share of unjust, unforgiving individuals, greedy for wealth and thirsty for others blood. That is why old Testament regularly reminded people to rid society of oppressive systems and their own sinful ways. They also foretold the birth of Jesus, which would auger a peaceful era for humanity.
St. John’s gospel states, “God so loved the world that he sent his only son into this world so that whoever believes in him may not be lost but have eternal life. Christmas is celebrated to observe the birth of a person who made a deep impact on human society down the centuries. In his mission manifesto, Jesus declared that he had come to liberate the oppressed, to give sight to the blind and to set the captives free, sharing love in concrete ways. If Einstein’s question still stares us on our face, it is because the actor, Jesus, does not impose his love upon us.