Christmas in Your Darkest Room
As a dad of toddlers, I spend a lot of time reading books that rhyme. I also try to find books about Christmas that might compel my kids to wonder at Advent's deeper meanings. Unfortunately, there aren't many books out there like that. So, last Christmas I sat down and tried to wordsmith a nifty rhyming Christmas poem. I had hoped to pen something my children might enjoy. The process, however, felt more like Scrabble than like writing . . . trying to piece together syllables rather than one-letter tiles. And so, I didn't really come up with a kid-friendly poem, but I did find a way to express Christ's birth and its deepest meaning to me. While it won't be confused as some lost Seuss verse, I still hope it might help us find Jesus in places we might have otherwise missed in these last few days before Christmas.
‘Twas the first Christmas, when Mary gave birth
The baby she bore, gives hope to all the earth.
His first cries rang out in a dirty stable,
Nothing like a glorious king from an old fable
No, hope burst forth from the humblest setting
This child-king laid in straw for his bedding
Humble like us, but a king all the same
For angels in the sky sang his name.But to what great audience did they sing?
To queens or priests? No, in shepherd ear did ringthat angelic hymn of glory and peace
For ages people waited to see exile ceaseNow, poor shepherds knew first
That God had sent a boy to redeem what’d been cursed
Perhaps you too feel unworthy and lowly
Covered in life’s dirt, accrued slowlyCan you imagine God come to you in your manger?
Right in the midst of your sorrow and anger?No regalia, no glow, no throne, nor a crown
At Christmas, to such as you God bends downIf you spend the season looking for a heavenly glow,
I’m afraid you’ll miss this king who’s come so low.
Instead, set a space in your heart’s darkest room,
To receive the hopeful fruit of Mary’s humble womb.