“Shout and celebrate, Daughter of Zion! I’m on my way. I’m moving into your neighborhood!”God’s Decree.” Zechariah 2:10 (MSG)
I grew up in a great neighborhood on the north side of Des Moines. There were a ton of kids up, down and around the block. Every afternoon and evening was spent outside running around the neighborhood. When someone moved in or out of the neighborhood, it was always a big deal. What were the “new people” like? Did they ahve kids? If so, how old? As bits and pieces of knowledge and observation were shared among us, it did not take long for “the new people” to be known by everyone.
Our church has been reading the book “The Story of God, the Story of Us” by Sean Gladding. One of the things the book has given me to chew on is how God, from the very beginning of the story, has revealed Himself as the God who is almighty, transcendent, and above it all, and at the same time the God who is near.
In today’s chapter, Zechariah proclaims that God is “moving into the neighborhood.” And, that’s just what Jesus did. Hundreds of years after Zechariah’s prophecy one of Jesus followers would write:
The Word became flesh and blood,
and moved into the neighborhood.
We saw the glory with our own eyes,
the one-of-a-kind glory,
like Father, like Son,
Generous inside and out,
true from start to finish. John 1:14 (MSG)
The good news is that God, the almighty creator of the universe, humbled himself to become one of us. He moved into the neighborhood to live, and walk, and love, and laugh. That’s why Jesus can say “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my knock and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him and he with me.” (Revelation 3:20). He lives in the neighborhood. He can come over, knock on the door, and come in for a meal and a conversation.
Today, I’m thankful for a God who is both transcendent and near. God is both the almighty maker of the universe, and the God who became flesh and blood and lived among us.