By Tom Cash
Can I brag on our grandchildren for a moment? While ministering in Indiana, we lived 75 miles from our son’s family. On a busy December Sunday afternoon, we traveled south to attend our grandkids’ Christmas program. Because of extra obligations that day, we walked through their church doors five minutes after the event started.
We were concerned we might have missed the bulk of our 3-year-old granddaughter’s performance. But as we stepped into the darkened sanctuary, there was our Eliza standing in the front row with her classmates, singing “Away in a Manger” with all her heart.
She was looking for us! It took her all of 10 seconds to tap the arm of the girl she stood beside, point to the back of the room, and loudly proclaim, “There’s my grandma and grandpa!”
Lost in Wonder!
The elementary-aged children then stepped forward. Their musical revolved around selecting the star of Bethlehem. Although he had a small role, our 7-year-old grandson played it earnestly. As the wise men were guided to Bethlehem by the Christmas star, he walked on stage wearing a royal robe.
I could not take my eyes off him. He calmly stood beside the manger. Reaching for the doll lying in a bed of hay, Skyler gently stroked its head. While the last song was sung, he moved his lips, but seemed absorbed in thought as he slowly rubbed his hand back and forth on the edge of that manger.
Lost in Love and Praise!
Charles Wesley ended his hymn “Love Divine” with the phrase “Lost in wonder, love, and praise.” I saw expressions of wonder, love, and praise in Skyler as he helped to retell the timeless story of the most important birthday in history.
Do not allow the stress of the season to win out. May the reality of Christmas fill you with awe. May the love of Christmas warm your heart. May the power of Christmas never be stopped. Be lost in wonder, love, and praise as you worship the baby of Bethlehem who is now our Savior, Lord, and Redeemer. Come again to the manger.
Tom Cash is the senior minister at First Church of Christ in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. He and his wife, Coleeta, have two children and four grandchildren.