Archive for December 7th, 2022

The Nativity


Written by Nina Pope from the Village Church.

One special joy of Christmas is watching the excitement and anticipation of children as the season draws near, probably because it reminds me of that happy time in my own life. Our family had many traditions that we always looked forward to: parties with other families, visits with relatives, baking and exchanging cookies and treats with others, saving and choosing our gifts to others, driving around town looking at holiday lights which were so prevalent in those days, receiving a multitude of Christmas cards, buying and decorating a tree that was sure to be the most beautiful ever, then looking with wide-eyed wonder as the package count under the tree swelled. While there was an understanding of the true meaning of the season, church was not one of our family’s traditions, and I never remember seeing any version of the nativity scene in our home. It was a wonderful, warm set of experiences and memories but totally secular. I sang in the Christmas pageant at church but that was about it.

I wonder if my love of nativity sets now fills their absence from my childhood. The image of the nativity on any commercial product like wrapping paper or Christmas cards always draws my eye, and so it was when I discovered years ago that Fisher Price toy company produced a plastic yet charming Nativity set meant for children. The colorful pieces are just right for small hands to grasp, examine, enjoy. No worries about their fragility and no need to warn or reprimand little people about being careful. Chubby sheep and other animals surround the main characters. In those days, the toy company offered other sets including the wise men and camels, the innkeeper and his domain, plus multitudinous palm trees and other figures to complete the scene—all 100% plastic and 100% perfect to illustrate and share the Christmas story. Today several of the former toddlers are teens, but still each year they like to rediscover all the pieces and set up an expansive scene in our family room. One day, perhaps, they will find the same joy we feel as they introduce their own children to these meaningful, charming toys that never grow out of date and that fill a spiritual longing in each heart.


Isaiah 7:14

“Therefore, the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel.”


Read Full Post »