The room was silent, all the kids’ eyes glued to the gifted storyteller onstage. With expert skill she told the tale of the wise men coming to see Jesus. She said, “Evil King Herod told the wise men to let him know when they’d found the child so he could go and worship Jesus too. But he was lying! He didn’t really want to worship Jesus. He wanted to hurt him!”
Suddenly a first grader gasped and cried out, “WHAT?!”
It was awesome. This was obviously the first time this kid had ever heard the Christmas story, or at least that part of it. He was totally shocked that anyone would ever think about harming Jesus. This was completely new information.
I think of that day every year when I’m preparing to teach for Christmas. It’s a great reminder that I will have kids in the room who will be hearing this incredible story for the very first time.
That means I have to bring my A-game. I can’t let myself become lazy or bored just because I’ve heard the Christmas story a million times. I can’t just go through the motions. I have to be fully engaged with the wonder of what God did in Bethlehem.
As adults it’s easy to lose our sense of awe for the familiar. Many of us have talked about Mary, Joseph and the shepherds so many times, we may begin to see them more as cartoon characters instead of real, breathing humans who experienced the miraculous.Continue reading “Rediscovering Your Christmas Wonder”