A young preacher walked into a bait shop and made his way to the counter. As he approached, he met the clerk and began witnessing to him. The clerk became very inattentive toward the preacher. After the preacher told the clerk of the wonders and powers of Jesus, the clerk stopped him. He replied, “Preacher, I don’t know what you’re talking about. I can’t imagine why a man would give up all of that to come to die on a cross. It doesn’t make any sense.”
Befuddled, the young preacher decided to give the man a break while he tried to figure out how to connect this clerk to the hope Jesus brings.
“Why did Jesus leave heaven to minister to humans?” he thought.
As the pastor walked around the store, he saw a tub of earthworms. Chuckling, the light switched as the young pastor concocted a story that was sure to win this clerk to Christ.
The preacher asked, “How long do earthworms live?”
“Depends on what you do with them,” the now disgruntled employee answered.
The preacher then asked, ”How would you feel if you were to give up your humanness and trade places with those earthworms?”
The clerk said, “There is no way I give up my life to become an earthworm!”
The preacher grinned and said, “Well. That’s what Jesus did. He gave up his heavenly form, to become a human and come to rescue the souls of men. And for someone to give up all of that power, it was like him turning into an earthworm!”
Christians hear stories of Jesus’s love all the time. But often, we miss so much of the actual wonder of Jesus giving up His power and might to come in the form of a humble baby.
Like the pastor said, putting it on our terms, it’s as if Jesus left all of His royal glory and become nothing more than a lowly man, a bondservant, or an earthworm. The process in which Jesus gave up his royal power is extraordinary. He gave up all of it for us, to be born in a stable, suffer emotions, temptations, and the hardships or a human body.
“…have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:5-8).
In Philippians, we get a practical picture of how the birth of Jesus was more than a Christmas story in a Bethlehem cattle stall. Just as we view earthworms as nasty and worthless, Jesus made Himself nothing so He could come to be our Savior and live as a man.
Leaving glory, Jesus came in the form of a lowly babe that was destined to die on the cross. It’s crazy, but He chose us instead of His own comfort. That should be an encouragement.
Remember that we serve a God who chose to give up His son, who chose to give up His power, so we could live with Him for eternity. The baby is the beginning, but Jesus knew what He was doing before that little body touched the manger.
“For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me” (John 6:38).