The words Home and Christmas are connected by more than Dickensian charm, jingles, advertising, function or dysfunction. Home is rooted in the very heart of the biblical Christmas story.
"So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father's one and only Son…From his abundance we have all received grace upon grace." (John 1.14,16)
Genesis says that on the seventh day God “rested” or resided in the world he had made and ordered. Jesus’ arrival, then, at least for John, was not a first-time visitation but a purpose-laden homecoming. With this in mind, what does it mean that “God came home” in Jesus? What hope, what peace, what joy, what understanding of love does this bring us? How does God make his home among us, and what happens when we, as the carol says, prepare him room?
At Advent we remember God’s arrival in Jesus, welcome his homemaking Spirit today, and anticipate his glorious appearance in the future when he finishes what began through Jesus who makes all things new. That would include, we dare suggest, the very hearts we know are in dire need of renewal, and the many places we each call home today.