On the ninth day of Christmas, Christ revealed to me: the gift of sharing a beautiful story.
What’s the most powerful story you’ve ever heard?
Were you leaning forward in your seat, about to fall off the edge as you inched along, lingering on every word of the person speaking? Was your head tucked under your blankets, phone pressed into your ear as you laid there in silence, waiting for your friend to divulge the details of a secret she’s told to no one but you? Were you driving in the car, hitting the buttons of radio stations and all of the sudden, you heard a DJ say something that made you hold your finger in mid air, almost making you forget that you were operating a vehicle and needing to pay attention to the road?
Stories hold the potential for change, influence and movement.
Stories stick with us, like peanut butter that clings in thick layers to the sides of wheat bread, waiting to be slathered with jam and become something complete and satisfying. Like a good PB&J, a story awaits to be used, going beyond words on a page or voices in a conversation. Stories beg to be applied and to work their magic within our spirits.
It’s no wonder that one of the most important Christmas traditions is reading aloud the story of Christmas, the story of the Jesus’ birth. This story is found within the songs we sing, like “Away in a Manger,” or “O Little Town of Bethlehem.” You see it realized in ceramic manger scenes that sit on people’s entry way tables and you can find it on the covers of chocolate filled advent calendars.
A tradition in my life has been to read the story of Christ’s birth on Christmas eve. Curled up on the couch, I’ve read, listened and closed my eyes in reflection when hearing the story of Mary, Joseph, the inn keeper, the shepherds, the Wise Men, the Arc Angel Gabriel, and baby Jesus … how His birth marked the beginning of hope for all mankind.
So many people, Christians and non-believers, hear the Christmas story throughout the month of December. And this story, God’s beautiful story, has the power to bring the dead to life, to heal brokenness, to set children running back to their loving Father.
If your Christmas season doesn’t include opening the Bible and reading the story of Christ’s birth, I’d encourage you to sit down and devote the few minutes it takes to read. I encourage you to read it with someone else, or multiple people. Remember, if it wasn’t for the birth of Christ, we would not have Christmas. If your life is full of Christmas memories -magical and tender stories that are woven into your life- why not share the real story of Christmas with others?
You can find the story of Christmas in Luke chapter 2, verses one through 20. Find it within the pages of your Bible, or Google it, even. Read the story and let the words wash over you, refreshing your life this year to understand the Joy of Christmas.
** Check back tomorrow to see what Joy I’ve discovered on my 12 Days of Christmas journey. Miss Day 8, Day 7, Day 6, Day 5, Day 4, Day 3, Day 2 or Day 1? **