Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas from NHBC!

Luke 2:1–7

1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. 2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) 5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. 6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Right In Front of My Eyes

I've had the same nativity set for years. The ceramic pieces were made by a friend of mine who died several years ago. Each year I remember her as I put them out, and at the end of the season, I carefully pack the pieces away. However, after even the most careful packing for so many years....Baby Jesus was beginning to look pretty dinged up. The paint was chipped and it seemed a little disrespectful to put on display. I knew my friend wouldn't want me to continue to use it. So....I began the search for another set. But...I was also faced with the dilemma of what do you do with Baby Jesus? I didn't want to donate a damaged piece, but to throw it away seemed wrong! :  ) And so it sat on the counter, while I wondered, "What do I do with Jesus?"

My search was disappointing. Either I didn't like the expressions on the characters, they didn't look realistic, they were too expensive, or something else deterred me on each one. I then began to open up the cute set of little kids spelling out the word, "peace," a new decoration that I'd purchased this year. When the last piece was placed on the table and I stepped back to take a look, I was surprised to see that not only did they spell PEACE, but they were dressed in nativity scene apparel...they were, in fact, a NATIVITY SCENE. The nativity had been right there in my home all along, and I had missed it.

I was struck by two truths during those couple of days. 1) We are all faced with the question, "What do I do with Jesus?" Our answer and that of others has eternal significance. And 2) Sometimes Jesus is right in front of our eyes and we miss Him because we aren't looking. Open my eyes, Lord, to see you and to help others see you, and to make the right choices of what to do with Jesus. The ball is in our court.