Advent: Jesus Our Brother


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From The Friendly Beasts, a French hymn from the 12th century. I love this version.

 Jesus our Brother, kind and good

Was humbly born in a stable rude

And the friendly beasts around Him stood

Jesus our brother, kind and good.

This song is admittedly somewhat silly. It’s kind of in the same category as “The Little Drummer Boy.” Like even after several listens you’re not totally sure what it’s about. BUT, I will love this song forever because my kids school has the preschoolers do it for the yearly Christmas program and it is quite literally the cutest thing you’ve ever seen.

Titus was the only one of my kids to do this program and he was a dove. He “cooed Him to sleep so He would not cry.” And Josh and I could not stop grinning in the audience because, well, Titus was a DOVE. And Titus SANG.

Titus, from the get-go, has not been all that into singing. We do a lot of singing in our house, but getting him to join in has always been somewhat like pulling teeth. Somehow, though, The Friendly Beasts brought out the singer in Titus, and now, a year later, he can sing this entire ancient hymn, word for word.

So this is one of our favorite songs, in spite of its silliness.

What’s not silly, though, is that first stanza. I was thinking about that stanza today, about Jesus as our brother. Our Elder Brother. Always kind, always good. But also able to sympathize with us in our weaknesses. Our Brother.

Sometimes I think we forget about this aspect of our relationship with Christ. He’s a baby, born in a manger. A Teacher, instructing in parables. A Messiah, the fulfillment of the promise. A Savior, crucified and risen and seated at the right hand of the Father. But He’s also the Brother of those who have believed.

This morning our pastor preached about the Christ who left heaven to come and bring us home.  It is there he waits for us as our Brother. He is there sympathizing with our weaknesses, loving us through our trials, strengthening us by His sanctifying grace. He is our family, our comfort, our forever home.

This season, I want to remember that this Jesus is not just a babe in a manger, but my family, my home. He is a brother, ready to save, love, sympathize, comfort, rejoice, sustain. He gave Himself for the weak and the weary, the needy and desperate. He gave Himself for me.

He is our Brother, kind and good.

“For he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one source. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers.” (Hebrews 2: 11)


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