While wrapping Christmas gifts for several special people, such a feeling of joy overcame me. I imagined my loved ones anticipating opening these gifts at the right time – on Christmas day. I can see them gradually untying the knots I tied, excitedly tearing the gift wrapper, wide-eyed as they appreciate their gifts. It is such a wonderful sight to watch someone opening gifts!
Then, I realized how this translates to the hidden mystery of Christ’s coming into this world. There is beauty in the hidden. Just like a bride who refuses to see her groom before the wedding, their chaste love heightening anticipation for their union, Jesus’ Kingdom is like a hidden pearl in an oyster or a radiant diamond that is yet to be discovered.
Often, beautiful things take time to grow because Jesus’ timing is always right. We need to cultivate beautiful people, relationships, and realities in our lives just like a blossoming flower. As St Augustine said: “Since love grows within you, so beauty grows for love is the beauty of the soul”.
No wonder the world has always been captivated by beauty, since it’s a glimpse of the Divine. As such beauty, poses a challenge for us – that we rediscover it day by day. According to Scott Barry Kaufman, various studies suggest that strengthening the content of your character can make you beautiful. Often, we ourselves need time to unearth our own beauty.
As we count down the days to Christmas, let us prepare our hearts for Christ’s coming. God’s greatest gift for mankind is not wrapped in fancy gift wrappers but in swaddling clothes.
“This will is sign to for you: You will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:12 )