Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas Memories 

Sometimes Christmas memories take on the form of arguments. 
As the year I heard my eight year old daughter, Krysta, singing,

"Souvenirs  souvenirs!
  It's Christmas time in the city!" 
Her older sister, Deanne, was quick to point out the error. 
"It is not souvenirs.  It's silver bells!"  Deanne explained. 
Krysta was irked.  "It sounds like souvenirs to me!"

Listening to them, I was transported back to fifth grade in
Williams, MN.  Mrs. Johnson, our music teacher, put together
a beautiful Christmas concert.  We carried candles, walked up
the aisle of the gymnasium, and sang Silent Night
I remember trying to hit the minor notes in What Child Is This?
and the tinkling sound of Silver Bells.

Deanne looked up the lyrics for Silver Bells
As I read the words I thought of sixth grade at Williams. 
The concert the year before had caused a stir in the community. 
Some people objected to the hymns we sang.  In sixth grade we had
a pantomime featuring Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus. 
No Christmas carols allowed . . .

And the debate continues . . .
to wish others a Merry Christmas . . . or not.

We hear about those who believe there should be no mention of
Christmas at all.  Christmas vacation isn't Christmas vacation . . 
it is the winter break.  Some want to throw Santa Claus and
the nativity scene into one bag and pitch the whole kit and
caboodle out the window. 

A commercialized Christmas is ironic.  There's the story of a couple
who drove past a church and noticed a nativity scene on the lawn. 
"Just look at that!"  she sputtered. 
"Now the church thinks they're going to get in on Christmas, too."

Thoughts of Jesus bring conflict. 
The Bible says,
"He was in the world, and the world
was made by him, and the world knew him not. 
He came unto his own, and his own
received him not."  John 1:10,11 

It stretches our minds to think of the Creator of the universe
lying in a manger.

Mrs. Johnson taught us the timeless beauty of old Christmas carols. 
This is a memory that can't be erased. 
Can you hear the angels singing? 
Can you see the shepherds dashing to Bethlehem? 
They found the stable and the animals. 
Joseph and Mary and baby Jesus were there
just like the angels said. 

We can be comforted this year when we sing Christmas
carols and tell our children the story of Jesus. 
He was willing to come to a world full of strife.



Amy Lou said...

"Shepherds dashing to Bethlehem". I like this. So much for those silly reindeer!

Arla said...

Sorry, that was me, not Amy making comment. 115 2489858