When Someone Understands
Do you ever feel like you have met someone who has read your own mail? I was in a conversation a few months ago and I was listening to a person I had met casually at a couple of events. This man began to talk about his favorite parts of his job and the kinds of things that get in the way of his best gifts. He was describing the “tyranny of the urgent” that we all face on some level, but the specific way he said it, the examples he used could have been lifted off of the pages of my own personal journal.
Two things were now true: I understood him and he understood me. I didn’t know a lot about his work, his career path, or his personal values, but I knew enough from 10 minutes of exchanges to know that he understood my own choices and priorities for one reason: he claimed the same choices and priorities for himself.
At Christmas, I am astounded when I realize that Jesus came into our world to rescue us and would be able to do that as one who understands how our joys and pains feel. He’s not distant and protected; he was willing to dive into our circumstances, our struggles, our temptations. He is acquainted with our testings, Hebrews says. That’s encouraging to me. Our Savior understands us and committed to interceding for us when we need it most.
It was only possible because of Christmas. He plunged into the human condition, arrived in a manger. . . for US!