This is my Nativity Scene. It was purchased in November, or December, of 1946 by my parents, probably from Woolworths for less than $10. It is the Nativity Scene I have had all my life. As you can see a wise man has gone for a walk, some sheep have wandered off, two camels got tired of waiting for their riders and the angel looks like she was mucking out the cow’s stall. While this cheap, plaster of Paris set, which is chipped and dusty has no monetary value, at 74 years of age it is priceless to me.
My parents used this scene to explain to me what Christmas was all about. Not presents given or received, not Santa, not even joyful celebration. Rather Christmas is about God reminding us that They/Them are one of us. God became a human to remind us that They/Them walks with us, sits with us, listens to us, pray with us, dance and sing with us, cry with us, grieve with us, be disappointed with us, to doubt with us and then, . . . then discover that the Great Divine is right here to comfort us. The Great Divine surrounds us, moves through us, is part of every molecule of the clay vessel we call a body. They/Them is present in every animate and inanimate object of the universe. We cannot escape the presence of the Universal Divine for They/Them are part of every fiber of our being.
Love is recognizing we are here with each other, and the Divine Creator loved us enough to become one of us just to remind us of that. From the beginning we are created to be one with They/Them, She/He, how ever you address the one Universal Presence that came down to us 2000, 1000, 74 years ago, or right this moment.
I do not celebrate Christmas the way most people do, never have and never will. But I offer this prayer to every one of you:
May the love of the Universal Divine come into your hearts.
May you remember the Holy is incarnated within you.
May the sacred light shine forth from you.
May you shine out as bright as the star in the East with Love’s gift of
Justice, Kindness, and Peace.
Ruth Jewell, ©December 24, 2020