by Gayle Veithenheimer
It’s a tough concept for this freedom-loving, red-blooded American girl to wrap her brain around.
I can join the angels to sing “Glory to God in the highest.”
I can kneel at the manger with the shepherds as the sweet baby sleeps on the hay.
But I struggle with King Jesus, because when I think of the Christmas story, the only king who comes to mind is Herod.
The power of life and death in his hands.
Americans fight wars to stop that kind of king. Liberty. Freedom. These are words I cherish.
The idea of bowing before a sovereign, kissing a ring, or kneeling before a throne?
These thoughts are foreign. I don’t know too many Americans willing to go there.
Perhaps out of respect for a visiting dignitary.
But for the president? No way. He’s one of us.
Yet, so is Jesus.
Emmanuel. God with us.
Could it be I have issues with authority? Sovereign authority?
One that asks me to submit to His will instead of blessing mine.
One that refuses lip service and waits for a living sacrifice.
One that prizes relationship rather than ritual.
And I balk.
While I love the romantic images of Lewis’s Aslan and Tolkien’s Aragorn, I also battle the familiarity of relationship and a reverence for the authority of my Sovereign.
I’m eager to press in. To savor the Christmas story, croon my carols, and light my Advent candles.
Meanwhile, King Jesus waits for me to bow.
To yield my will to His.
Because, “ . . . where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” (2 Cor. 3:17 NIV)
Because Christ’s love met the requirements of His Father’s justice, freedom and liberty are mine. Gifts I treasure, not only for this season, but daily as I walk with my King.
Is my King a dictator? Yes.
Is He ruthless? He can be.
Is the power of life and death in His hands? Without a doubt.
Because, as Mr. Beaver said, “ ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
Will you submit to the Sovereign?