There is no deeper longing in the human heart than this: to love and to be loved by God. Nothing in this whole universe can satisfy this longing and no one can long ignore it. There is a thirst in our soul for God, and many people have gone terribly astray trying to quench that thirst with a drink that simply leaves them as parched as before. Yet we have a dire problem: the very fulfillment of our deepest longing is beyond our reach because of sin, as though the last source of water on Earth was on the other side of an impassible desert.
Yet for love of us God crossed that desert, taking on flesh and coming as a conqueror to destroy the chains of sin that bind us. John cries out, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” At long last the single barrier between us and God is breeched and it is possible, by His grace, to enter into loving relationship with the God from whom we have been estranged, in one degree or another, since the Fall.
This is the true joy of Christmas; this is the gift that we have received. This tiny infant is, as C. S. Lewis has written, God come incognito behind enemy lines to lead us back to Himself. Through the Incarnation we are able to restore what once was thought forever lost: loving communion with God. Let us not hesitate to let Christ fulfill our heart’s deepest longing; go to Him and love Him, and let not your past sins paralyze you with shame. He has come precisely to remove your sins so they are no longer a barrier to loving Him. Recall that in your Baptism you are now loved with the same love which binds Father and Son eternally, and with which both of them love you. Could we have asked for a greater gift than this?