A story of two princes

          The other day, I heard on the radio that “Prince George” was the most searched phrase of the year on Yahoo’s search Engine.  That’s not really a bad thing.  I can think of many other people who made headlines (publicizing inappropriate actions) this year and yet did not beat out Prince George. Although he is a baby, he naturally draws attention from around the world.  In fact, his celebrity status began before his birth. The news media flashed glimpses of his growth within the comfortable home of his mother’s womb.  As his arrival date grew closer, so did the curiosity and excitement.  News outlets camped outside the hospital.  Speculation abounded on the gender; which up to the delivery, was unknown. A frenzied welcome awaited him.  We all love babies; but George isn’t just any baby.  He is a Prince.  A future King.  An heir to a long lineage of status, adoration, power, and wealth.  Although, Royals no longer hold the positions of authority from ages ago, the family lineage continues to hold prestige.  Prince George’s status as the most searched for phrase on “Yahoo” is rooted simply in his identity as a Royal.
         It is ironic then, that as we enter the season of Advent, that we reflect on another boy born long ago.  A boy,who was regarded in some circles as a  Royal.  In fact, word had it that he would become a King.  This; despite the fact that neither of his parents held a Royal position.  Contrary to Prince George this  impending newborn was not the object of adoration in his prenatal development.  Rather than celebrate the news of his conception, his earthly father felt a sense of shame.  For a short time; he considered severing his relationship to his son and his wife. 
          Unlike George, Jesus did not arrive to a world full of glorious anticipation of his birth.  In fact, no one gathered to catch a glimpse of his mother in labor.  His birth did not take place in a hospital with the best medical care accessible.    In fact, his parents were turned away from a place where they might find moderate comfort.  Instead, he was bor.n in the same conditions as an animal:rustic and alone. He did have body guards to keep him safe. 
        Unfortunately there was already a threat to his life in the form of a order from King Herod.  Yes, Jesus was just a baby but Herod a hunch there was some truth to the prophecies which had been repeated through generations.  The possibility existed that this baby may in fact become a King; and a threat to Herod’s power.  He would have none of it.  And the order was given: all infant boys ages two years were to be killed. Fortunately, the power wielded by Jesus’ Father far outweighed that of bodyguards.
       One wonders what kind of attention the birth of Jesus would have drawn today.  Would those who had hunches about Jesus’ real identity have been convicted enough to tweet about it?  To post it as a status on Facebook?  Would tabloids even have risked putting it in their headline because it seems too crazy?  Wouldn’t be profitable?
          Certainly, George is a very fortunate little guy. His parents love him, provide for him and one day he will demand respect simply because of his identity.  He will live a life of priviledge.  However, it is an earthly life.  Confortable? Yes.  Ultimately fulfilling?  Not neccessarily.  His grandmother, Princess Diana, sadly demonstrated that earthly riches cannot bring ultimate fulfillment.  Even the vast amount of charity work performed by the Royals cannot bring ultimate purpose or complete transformation to those living in brokeness.
          So, go ahead and enjoy the updates on George.  Be happy for a baby who has loving parents who will provide a great example of  compassion and leadership.  But remember that in this story about the lives of two baby boys, only one of them was born with the identity as a Prince (of Peace) Son (of God), and Mighty God (Isaiah 9:6). 

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