The Fourth Advent Candle—Love

Last night I lit the fourth Advent candle representing love.

Rich and I had our four grandchildren over yesterday afternoon to decorate gingerbread houses. When they were done we moved to the living room for the annual pickle ornament hunt. The three boys were busy dismantling the Christmas tree as they repeatedly hid, searched and found the elusive pickle.

Our five-year-old granddaughter was playing with the Fischer Price nativity set on the hearth. I sat down next to her trying to ignore the swaying Christmas tree. She was busy arranging the figures and wondering why there weren't any horses or cats (her favorite animals). As I looked around at her new arrangement of the nativity scene, I noticed the baby Jesus was missing.

"Tyler, where is baby Jesus?" I asked, hoping she hadn't hidden Him.

"I put him behind the barn because He hasn't been borned yet." 

"Good idea. When will we put him back in the barn?"

"On Christmas morning, of course," she answered looking at me like I was a newcomer to Christmas.

"Well then, I'll make sure to put Him in the manger between Mary and Joseph as soon as I get up on Christmas."

She nodded, apparently satisfied that I now understood the proper order of things. I smiled and left it at that.

I didn't tell her Jesus was really born over two thousand years ago. That because God loved us and wanted us to know Him, He came to earth as a baby and grew into a curious five-year-old like her. I didn't explain that Jesus then grew into a man who would fulfill His destiny as the Savior of the world. I will save that for another time. For now we will simply celebrate His getting "borned."

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." John 3:16

Lord, thank You for loving us so. Please help us to love each other and to share the real gift of Christmas.

God bless you as you celebrate the birth of our Savior.

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