Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Pageants

Every Christmas I try to read
with my children.
It is one of my all time favorite books.
Of course it consists of two of my most favorite things:
laughter and the Savior of the world.
I have the book that my Aunt Shirley
gifted to my family one year.
I treasure it.
My Aunt Shirley loves literature like I do.
I want to grow up to be like her one day.
She writes better than me.

I am of the opinion that Christmas Pageants
should only be given by children or professionals.
A few years ago they had LG dress up like a wise man
and I just thought it was pure mockery.
Especially since they had him dressed in the costume
that was obviously meant for an African.
He was one big white African King.

Well, anyhow, somebody forwarded me an e-mail
with a funny little Christmas pageant tale.
It showcases WHY exactly children are the ones to give any 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
I would be a perfect mother,
love it with all my heart
and raise it with His word
as my guide.

God answered my prayer s
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 a nd
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 twenty-three 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
twenty-five thousand 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,

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..

Yesterday at church
It was also a heartwarming tale.
which supports my idea of
children being the best actors for a pageant.

I cried as Wally the innkeeper
felt compassion and interceded with
"Wait, you can have my room."

This made me ponder on what I am willing to give.
Sometimes I don't even think I am smart enough
to give up my own room;
even when I have promised to give everything.

I will end this Christmas post with
my favorite
Christmas poem.

In the Bleak Midwinter - Christina Rosetti 1872.

In the bleak mid-winter
Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron,
Water like a stone;

Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak mid-winter
Long ago.

Our God, Heaven cannot hold Him
Nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away
When He comes to reign:

In the bleak mid-winter
A stable-place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty,
Jesus Christ.

Enough for Him, whom cherubim
Worship night and day,
A breastful of milk
And a mangerful of hay;
Enough for Him, whom angels

Fall down before,
The ox and ass and camel
Which adore.

Angels and archangels
May have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim
Thronged the air,

But only His mother
In her maiden bliss,
Worshiped the Beloved
With a kiss.

What can I give Him,
Poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd
I would bring a lamb,
If I were a wise man
I would do my part,
Yet what I can I give Him,
Give my heart.

I hope that I can give Him my heart.
My whole heart.
Every day.
And be like Him.
More selfless.

I know
just how I enjoy
unexpected outcomes from
funny Christmas pageants,
He accepts
my best attempts at worship.
No matter how
Or how
far from
they are.

Because the imperfect kind
are often the best
and most meaningful.


ShEiLa said...

Very thought provoking post and I pondered every word. Thank you Dear Friend!


ps. I need to get that book I have never read it.

Lori said...

I love that book too. I remember seeing the play at the Bijou when I was little too.

Jenny said...

We love this book too. Love to read it every Christmas.