When the angels went away from them to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go, then, to Bethlehem to see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” So they went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child. All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them.
Psalm 97:1-7, 9
The LORD is king; let the earth rejoice; let the many islands be glad. Cloud and darkness surround him; justice and right are the foundation of his throne. Fire goes before him, consuming his foes on every side. His lightning illumines the world; the earth sees and trembles. The mountains melt like wax before the LORD, before the Lord of all the earth. The heavens proclaim his justice; all peoples see his glory. All who serve idols are put to shame, who glory in worthless things; all angels bow down before him… For you, LORD, are the Most High over all the earth.
THE CHRISTMAS PAGEANT
My husband and I had been happily married (most of the time) for five years but hadn’t been blessed with a baby.
I decided to do some serious praying and promised God that if he would give us a child, I would be a perfect mother, love it with all my heart and raise it with His word as my guide.
God answered my prayers and blessed us with a son.
The next year God blessed us with another son.
The following year, He blessed us with yet another son.
The year after that we were blessed with a daughter.
My husband thought we’d been blessed right into poverty. We now had four children, and the oldest was only four years old. I learned never to ask God for anything unless I meant it. As a minister once told me, “If you pray for rain, make sure you carry an umbrella.”
I began reading a few verses of the Bible to the children each day as they lay in their cribs. I was off to a good start. God had entrusted me with four children and I didn’t want to disappoint Him.
I tried to be patient the day the children smashed two dozen eggs on the kitchen floor searching for baby chicks.
I tried to be understanding when they started a hotel for homeless frogs in the spare bedroom, although it took me nearly two hours to catch all 23 frogs.
When my daughter poured ketchup all over herself and rolled up in a blanket to see how it felt to be a hot dog, I tried to see the humor rather than the mess.
In spite of changing over 25,000 diapers, never eating a hot meal and never sleeping for more than thirty minutes at a time, I still thank God daily for my children. While I couldn’t keep my promise to be a perfect mother – I didn’t even come close – I did keep my promise to raise them in the Word of God.
I knew I was missing the mark just a little when I told my daughter we were going to church to worship God, and she wanted to bring a bar of soap along to “wash up” Jesus, too.
Something was lost in the translation when I explained that God gave us everlasting life, and my son thought it was generous of God to give us his “last wife.”
My proudest moment came during the children’s Christmas pageant.
My daughter was playing Mary, two of my sons were shepherds and my youngest son was a wise man. This was their moment to shine.
My five-year-old shepherd had practiced his line, “We found the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes.” But he was nervous and said, “The baby was wrapped in wrinkled clothes.”
My four-year-old “Mary” said, “That’s not ‘wrinkled clothes,’ silly. That’s dirty, rotten clothes.” A wrestling match broke out between Mary and the shepherd and was stopped by an angel, who bent her halo and lost her left wing.
I slouched a little lower in my seat when Mary dropped the doll representing Baby Jesus, and it bounced down the aisle crying, “Mama-mama.” Mary grabbed the doll, wrapped it back up and held it tightly as the wise men arrived.
My other son stepped forward wearing a bathrobe and a paper crown, knelt at the manger and announced, “We are the three wise men, and we are bringing gifts of gold, common sense and fur.”
The congregation dissolved into laughter, and the pageant got a standing ovation.
“I’ve never enjoyed a Christmas program as much as this one,” laughed the pastor, wiping tears from his eyes. “For the rest of my life, I’ll never hear the Christmas story without thinking of gold, common sense and fur.”
“My children are my pride and my joy and my greatest blessing,” I said as I dug through my purse for an aspirin.
Jesus had no servants, yet they called Him Master. Had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher. Had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer. Had no army, yet kings feared Him.
He won no military battles, yet He conquered the world. He committed no crime, yet they crucified Him. He was buried in a tomb, yet He lives today.
Feel honored to serve such a Leader who loves us.
GOD BLESS YOU ALL! ~Eowyn & Joan
Times change, but the story is the same.
This will bring Joy to your heart…
H/t beloved fellow Bloomergal. ~Eowyn