Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Silent Night Holy Night"1 (Lyrics)
Matthew 21:16 – "Do you hear what these children are saying?" they asked him. "Yes," replied Jesus, "have you never read, 'From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise'?" (NIV)
I will never forget the Christmas Eve service that I attended on December 24th, 1989. That year, it was decided that a significant portrayal of the Christmas story would be presented complete with wise men, shepherds, Joseph and Mary, and a live baby. One of my granddaughters was born in September, 1989, and she was chosen to play the part of Baby Jesus.
The church was packed with over 300 people. To minimize the risk of something unexpected happening during the live performance, her father, John, had been chosen to play the part of Joseph.
Following the perfectly executed performance, the leader explained the meaning of each participant's role to ensure that the spiritual significance was relevant and authentic for all present.
After mentioning the wise men, the shepherds, and the angels, he came to Joseph. He paused briefly, and before he could say anything, he was interrupted. My oldest granddaughter, who was three at the time, commented in a loud voice that could be heard by most in the audience, "That's not Joseph! That's my Uncle John."
The leader struggled to regain his composure and continued his summation of the story, ensuring that all in the audience understood the significance of the parts played convincingly by each presenter.
During the Christmas holidays, we are challenged to be authentic in our explanations to children. The fantasy of Santa Claus riding his sleigh and bringing toys can be helpful if it is used to teach the joy of giving to others. Similarly, telling of the birth of Jesus in an authentic manner can be challenging.
While we may chuckle at my granddaughter's comment, the lesson that this incident teaches is a challenge to you and me to consider that it is essential and important to be authentic and genuine in all that we think and in all the actions that we take in life.
Paul's words in Corinthians give a challenge to us all.
1 Corinthians 13:1-5 – If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful. (ESV)
Prayer: Dear Father, help us to be authentic in all that we do. May we share Your love with others in a genuine way. Amen.
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Merry Christmas Vince!
Truth out of the mouth of babies. Merry Christmas.
Thanks, Vincent. I love this family story and the lesson it gives us.
Thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Blessings and happy Christmas and upcoming year!
Lovely story about your granddaughter today. Thank you for all your writings. Have a Merry Christmas and Good New Year.
Vincent, I love how little children teach us about being authentic! Thank you for your story. Be blessed today. Emmanuel has come… and IS coming soon!
Greetings Vince and thank you for your good words today and may you enjoy a blessed Christmas and much good health and joy into the New Year 2023. Blessings for your special writings.
Great lesson Vincent! Oh to have that childlike honesty and authenticity of children. God bless you for sharing your heart this Christmas Eve morning. Continue to use your talent of writing for the Lord.
Thank you, Vincent. This is a good call.
Thank you for all your writing. I do look forward to your personal stories. Enjoy the blessings of Christmas.
It’s so nice to say Merry Christmas to someone who understands the real reason for the season!
Dear Mr. Walter,
What a spectacular Devotional ! You Blessed us truly this Christmas Eve.
I wish you and your loved ones a Blessed Christmas.
I pray for your health, happiness, joy, and wealth always.
Take care and stay safe.
Thanks again for the great Devotional. Thanks for sharing.
Wishing you a Blessed Christmas with your family and friends.
Praying God fills your heart with all the good things He has to give.
Very good, Vincent!! We never stop learning no matter how old we are. I’ve always heard that we need to learn something new every day, and I recently turned 98 and still learning. May you and your family have a grand celebration of the birth of our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ, and on to a great New Year!!!
JOY TO THE WORLD!!!
Merry Christmas Vincent.
Reading your devotional brought back memories for me. Our youngest daughter was born October 1989 and on December 24, 1989, at a church, my husband portrayed Joseph, I was Mary and she was baby Jesus. It made the Christmas story very special that year. How different the birth of our daughter, born in a hospital, compared to the birth of Jesus in a stable; yet the love of God was present at both births.
Thank you for all the devotionals you have written. I always enjoy reading yours.
Good Morning Vincent, and SHALOM!
Thank You for your Devotional which you shared with thousands of people.
It brought back a flood of memories of my teaching years, and the 37 Christmas
very elaborate! They were all wonderful, each in its own way.
If you have access to a library, you might try to get a copy of a book titled The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. It is a small book and can be read in a short time. I read that book to 35 classes of students.
Thanks for the good word, Vince. Have a Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas Vince,
I appreciate all your devotionals and the thought and love that you put into them as you share with us your faith and understanding. My favourite hymn is the one chosen to accompany your message.
Being “authentic” in our faith can have its challenges in today’s world. The “love” that is described in 1 Corinthians also has its challenges every day. Of course challenges can be overcome with help from our Holy Spirit. Remembering to ask for help and to strive for both of these things are part of our faith.
Wishing you and your family a peaceful and joyful Christmas and looking forward to more of your devotionals in the coming year. May God bless you.
Thanks Walter, Merry Christmas to you and your family.