Today is a feast that mingles childlike joy and terrified awe. While it has been the gift of the West to draw out the former, here’s a hymn from the (Arab Christian) East that captures the gift of the latter:
Glory to the Spiritual One Who was well-pleased
that His Child should become a body so that through Him His power might be felt
and that the bodies of His kindred might live again.
Blessed is He Whose will brought Him
to the womb and to birth and to the bosom and to growth.
Blessed is He Whose changes revived our humanity.
Let us glorify Him Who watched and put to sleep our captor.
Let us glorify the One Who went to sleep and awoke our slumber.
Glory to God the Healer of human nature.
(St. Ephraim the Syrian, Hymns on the Nativity 3.3, 6, 19)