Thursday, December 8, 2011

Gather near

When Ben isn't throwing or kicking a camel across the floor, this Little People Nativity is a great addition to our house during the Christmas season.

Seriously, listening to my 4-year-old girl talk about Baby Jesus and watching her re-arrange the manger scene is as sweet as it gets. Even if her 2-year-old brother is tempted to throw camels and wise men.

We moved the nativity from the floor, where it was easy to scatter, to a table near the Christmas tree. Not long after doing so yesterday, I noticed the above manger scene. And, truthfully, it made my heart melt. Every person and animal is huddled together facing Jesus.

And that's how it should be.

This story is real. The savior of the world was born in an ordinary barn. His momma was relieved to have him in her arms. Joseph was protecting his new family. And the animals probably wondered what was happening.

And the world was never the same again. The little baby grew up to be a man that people admired and feared and worshiped and crucified. The grave couldn't hold him. And hearts wouldn't be the same. All because that baby was born in a barn. And people gathered to see.

That little blue gift next to baby Jesus is from a train set Ben has. I asked Cate why she wanted the gift in the manger. She stared at me like I was asking a ridiculous question and then said, "It's Christmas. It's Jesus' birthday. People are bringing him presents."

Well, of course.

We're celebrating his birth. Just like all those people who came to see, we're rejoicing because he's here, just like God said he would be. Who wouldn't want to give a present to the savior of the world?

Just come and see. And, turns out, you'll be changed in ways that don't fit in a box tied up with a bow.

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