Emmanuel #Christmas #story

 

 

 

There are people everywhere in this little village of Bethlehem. It was light when we began our journey. My little ones are cold, but they have to wait in line like the rest of us. “There will be a crust of bread soon,” I whisper.  I rock back and forth on my feet to keep warm. My shawl is wrapped around my daughter’s shoulders.  The memory of the day’s sun is my only warmth. “Move along” a soldier on horseback almost knocks over my little boy. My husband silently pulls his namesake close. I know he wants to curse the Romans but even a scowl of discontent will lock him in prison.  A murmur courses through the crowd, ” It is said Messiah will come.” “Maybe this year,” an old priest says in hushed tones. God knows we are destitute and Rome is  an unbearable manacle around our wrists. “Please come and restore peace,” I silently pray. “Lift your face” a Roman holds his rod under my chin. “Were you praying?” I shake my head. “Dust in my eyes, master.” “Keep your pretty eyes open.” He looks lustfully at me. “Get going,” he strikes my husband forcefully on the back.

“There was a chorus of angels,” a message filters down the line.

“Shepherds in the fields saw them.”

“It must have been frightening.”

“Do you know what that means?”

“Our God has heard us.”

“Why are we still in these rags then?”

“Be patient wrongs will be made right.”

“Rome must be destroyed.”

“In good time…”

“Messiah will set us free.”

I imagine life free of this nightmare. Tyranny’s fist gone from our lives. My children will not know oppression as I have. I take a risk and fall to my knees praising God in my heart for His gift of love.

My arm is gently grasped. “Come with me” a voice grazes past my ear. “You will find your family later.”  I am led to a stall.  “Thank you,” I say to the man who has vanished.   I am used to animals so the strong smell doesn’t bother me.  I kneel because I am filled with knowledge that I am in the presence of glory. God is with me in this moment and all the cares of life have been washed away. I get off my knees and spin in a joyful dance. My eyes meet the mothers’.  Her smile is so serene as she holds her precious baby. “Here,” she offers “hold Him.” I am a mother of three,but I feel ill equipped to hold the chosen one. “Yes, it’s alright.” I look in His face. A single word fills me “blessed.” His finger grasps at mine. ” Yes, I am blessed,” I coo. Somehow I understood with no words being spoken what this small child was meant to do. “I will pray for you,” I mouthed to the mother as I looked at my Messiah one last time. “Shalom,” I said as I departed.

It’s as if everything around Him was acknowledging His birth. I heard the words of Isaiah brush by me on a fragrant stream of air. For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. ¹ 

As I walked back to my family, my circumstances had not changed. The Romans were as callous and barbaric as before, but I knew that my life would always be different. “God is with us,” I smiled, ” and He has come as a babe to save the world.”

****

Jesus came to the world not to rule with iron might but to love in absolute vulnerability. The ultimate gift was given to mankind. This love is more fierce and powerful than any military or political presence. This love sets all people free. It is only in this guileless love that Peace can be found;  only in the Son of man can we be delivered from life’s manacles. SHALOM

 

MERRY CHRISTMAS

 

 

 

 

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A Gift to U #uganda #christmas

 

The gift I send is love

you cant pack it in a box

or wrap it up and send it on a plane with a friend

1000 beads cant take its place

red, green and silver ribbon can’t outshine its beauty

it can’t be sealed in ziploc bags with a kiss

village children won’t make it in class

it can’t be hung on a tree

this kind of love was born in a manager

gave up all priviledge

scratchy hay against a baby’s skin

no kingly courts celebrated His arrival

He was despised, rejected

few heard the songs sung for Him

centuries cant outdistance the meaning

sacrifice became love

love became a free gift

it is what I send to my friends in Uganda this Christmas

and to you!

 

In October I started putting together a package of christmas gifts and crafts for 100 children. Love was placed in ziploc bags. A package went in luggage with a friend who went to Uganda in November. There was plenty of time for the children to receive their Christmas goodies. “The airlines regrets to tell you that your luggage was lost in transit.” I hope somewhere children are able to enjoy the crafts and gifts that were inside that lost luggage.  The best gift is the love I can send to my Pawell, Lacor and Gulu family – each of you is precious and loved beyond measure by the King.

 

 

 

Under the Tree #merrychristmas #poetry

gifts

as a child I would dream

of ribbons and bows

imagine the contents

things hidden, unseen

now I crinkle the paper

of my inner thoughts

so much more in the meaning

than the things that Ive bought

impoverished  the soul

for those fearing to live

take your pallet and walk

only Jesus could give

There is nothing incorrect

in such love for a world

for the lost He was born

offering nothing untoward

so this year I want Jesus

under my tree

Christ soon is coming

to save you and save me

*

hope is revived

for unto us a child is born

all is well

I wish each of you the hope of peace. It is not an offering that a world leader can make – the cost is too high.

Merry Christmas to all!

 

 

 

Christmas Cheer #songs

winter alley lights

If I could write you a Christmas song it wouldn’t be too long:

Deck the Halls – Who builds a deck in their hall?

12 Lords a Leaping – Gotta be a royalty thing.

Frosty the snowman – What would you do if your snowman started walking down the street?

Let it Snow – I’m kinda enjoying the warm spell.

Oh what fun it is to ride in a one horse open sleigh – What happens when there is ice – less fun???

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer – Never seen the nose so I can’t say “it glows”.

The ox and lamb kept time – They have watches?

Westward leading still proceeding following yonder star – Don’t they get lost during the day?

Silent Night – You obviously don’t know my kids…

Grandma Got Ran Over by a Reindeer– Who was driving?

It’s the Most wonderful Time of the Year – indeed it is and I hope each of you have a wonderful Holiday!!!

candle lit music

Bright are the Bows Brighter the Memories #thepast #poetry #holidays

“Life’s memories are like packages with bright bows” ~ L. Moon

gifts

I look at you from north, south, east, and west

like a cat I watch you and wait

sitting on the edge of expectation

don’t pretend that you are inert

you who shine with brilliant colors

holding poignant the past

underneath your cheerful bow

it is all I can do to be patient

“don’t shake the box”

I hear a cherished voice

one I thought I would never lose

every gift you wrapped

was filled with thought

down to a holly sprig or jolly elf

perched on top of the bow

what is inside this time?

recollections do play tricks

and you have to accept the mix

of jovial, spicy and sad

I’d rather not hear the crunch of paper

like the dead leaves of winter

I’d rather look at my reflection

of a much younger me

in precious grey old eyes

and remember the

Christmas Memory

Merry Christmas to each of you. May the songs that you hear and the scents that permeate your world bring you memories to keep you warm!!!

The Seven Days of Christmas #3 #poetry #Christmas

twinkle

 

On Wednesday we were winding down

but we knew there could be more

there always were a few left out

things needed by the poor

A box had been left with our name

“for all the things you do

we want to give you season’s joy

Christmas dinner for all of you”

Two turkeys and so much food

we called another friend

she always knew of those with need

on her I could depend

Last minute’s desperate call

a family without food

our anonymous delivery

provided for her brood

The next day it was Thursday

people readying for their day

so when this call came in

almost let the machine play

A man was placing the call

a home for his old car

the day after Christmas

they were moving very far

With a new baby on the way

our car wasn’t it

it worked for four of us

but the fifth wouldn’t fit

“I think it would be just right

for your growing family”

how he knew this I don’t know

when he passed a hand with keys

On this day as my husband locked

the outer office door

in the rarely used mail slot

ten hundreds on the floor

*

Christmas morning full of gifts

the children’s eyes were huge

the loving deeds of many folks

anonymous its true

I still give thanks

to the Lord above

for this miracle

filled with love

the important message

of those days

was the kindness

so many gave away

 

 

***

This is part three of three posts about a Christmas miracle that happened when my children were little. My husband and I were in charge of a non-profit that provided needs to the needy in our county. We managed to live on very little but never had extra money for socks and shoes and definitely not Christmas trees, ribbon and gifts. Our own families were very poor so they could not help us. I believe the catalyst for this 7 day miracle was the prayer of a little boy wanting his sister to have Christmas and the faith to believe it could happen.

Day 2, Day 1

Wishing you a Merry Christmas !!!!