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A Christmas Poem

December 26, 2013

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When Caesar Augustus ruled the mighty Empire of Rome,
When peace purchased with bloodshed enshrouded each home,
When mortal man had reached the deep night of despair,
When prophets were silent and holiness rare,

Lo, in the humble town of the shepherd-boy king,
In the arms of a maiden all pure, yea purer than spring,
Was beheld a sight strange to angels, unapproachable to men,
God as a child, the Almighty, a friend.

O Wisdom unfathomable, Condescension Divine
Heavenly Bread in the straw where cattle did dine.
Heaven’s gates now flung open and that sword flaming of old
No longer guards Paradise’s entry from the reach of the bold.

Yet another wonder even more marvelous still
is wrought in man’s soul in accord with his will.
His heart a new manger where the Christ child can lay
to be praised and most glorified by night and by day.

O Lord Jesus our King, come near us we pray,
Disdain not our foul hearts that offer Thee nothing, not even clean hay
But Come Thou Thyself and purify us with Thy Light
that we may glorify Thee forever in Thy Kingdom without night.

December 1996

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