(excerpted from free indeed: devotions for Lent 2017, Augsburg Fortress, Minneapolis)
The Creed: The Second Article
I believe in Jesus Christ, God's only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended to the dead [or, "he descended into hell," another translation of this text in widespread use]. On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of the Father, and he will come to judge the living and the dead.
There is nothing so secular that it cannot be sacred, and that is one of the deepest messages of the Incarnation. - Madeleine L'Engle, Walking on Water
I am a person of Christian faith because of the incarnation. The thought that a divine God would choose to reside in human flesh and walk among us remains one of the greatest mysteries and central tenets of my faith.
In a world that divides things into sacred and secular, Christianity offers an alternative, one that has the power to bring about restoration. Our brokenness is responsible for Jesus' journey to the cross. But, by choosing to become human, God showed us that we are worth restoring. By living a life that encompassed all the joy and pain that come with existence, Jesus submitted to humanity. This submission leads to the promise of integration and wholeness, that all may come to know the liberating power of God. After Jesus' death, God's power was at work, helping us to see that the story doesn't end with death. The point is a life of restoration, one that brings all things together for good. No one and nothing is outside of God's restorative power.
Spirit of the living God, fall fresh on us so that we may come to know your liberating power, which leads us to integration and wholeness. Amen.