We have a small nativity set that my aunt gave to our family several years ago. I put it out with our christmas decorations each year, but it is usually placed up high out of the reach of our children as it is breakable and they are, well, kids.
But I decided this year to put the nativity lower. Within reach. Surrounded by teensy flakes of snow. I fully expected that the boys would take interest in it and that there would probably be snowflakes all over the place, but I didn’t really anticipate what my no. 2 did yesterday afternoon.
First, he rearranged all of the figurines so that they were in a tight circle around baby Jesus. He fixed the snow so it was just right and stood staring at it for a short time.
Next, he went to the table and started a little craft. I thought nothing of it. He has a short attention span and moves from activity to activity like a whirlwind.
Only later did I realize that my sweet boy’s craft time consisted of taping a star to the amaryllis plant.
Because every nativity scene needs a star.
“Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.â€
“the magi went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.” Matthew 2
It is hard to find ways to keep our focus on the reason we celebrate Christmas. I love the carols, the lights, the shopping and decorating, the baking and parties. I even love santa. But most of all, I love Jesus. And I want so badly for my children to love him too.
My son making a star for the manger scene tells me he gets it. In his own six-year-old way, he cared enough about the story to make it right.
When I saw that star, I was overjoyed.