Some years ago, the chief
of a remote and primitive tribe in Africa
was asked about his people's notion of God.
This was the chief's reply:
"We know that at nighttime somebody goes by
in the trees out there but we never speak of it."
That was all they knew of God.
For them, God was a formless mystery,
deeply unknown like the wind
rustling in the trees in the dark of night.
How ghastly it would be,
if this were all that we could say of God.
Happily it is not.
For us, God is not a vague reality.
We know God to have a substance, shape, and personality.
Best of all, we know that God
has care and compassion for us.
All this we know because God came
down to earth in Jesus Christ.
And countless people living in Palestine at the time
saw God and heard God, touched God and loved God.
And so we never speak of God
as being the wind rustling in the trees.
Instead, we say that Word became flesh
and dwelt here among us.