Where’s Jesus?

Where’s Jesus?

Every year at this time I remember a story a lady at my church told about her grandson. When he was young, he would visit her house at Christmas time and go directly for the nativity. He might stand and play with the characters for a while, but inevitably he would carry baby Jesus around with him for the rest of his visit.

On one occasion the little guy forgot to return the figurine back to the manger scene. In fact he misplaced the baby. When his grandmother realized the Christ child was missing, she called her daughter.

“Honey, could you ask Grayson where he put the baby Jesus? He is missing from my nativity.”

Little Grayson was quite distraught. “Oh no! Where’s Jesus? We have to find Jesus.”

Eventually the figurine turned up and was returned to the nativity scene.

This story always makes me think about where Jesus is in my Christmas. Sounds odd. But I can get so caught up in the “doing” of Christmas that I forget what it’s all about. Plus I’m so familiar with the Christmas story that I don’t really stop to think about its significance.

Being a pastor’s wife, I’ll admit that I get bogged down going to all the events and working to get them all checked off my list. I always find myself so exhausted that I’m thinking I can’t wait until Christmas is over.

And then God gives me a scolding nudge. This past Sunday evening we hosted our 24th Christmas Open House at the Pastor’s. Friday night and Saturday we spend preparing goodies. Then on Sunday evening we let church members stop in during a three hour period.

This year I just had a bad attitude. There, I admitted it. I really wasn’t into it and preferred a long winter’s nap. But 3:30 rolled around and I plastered on a smile and a “let’s get this over with” attitude. Some of the first people to arrive was a little group of widows. They met up with another of their group, went through the line for food, and proceeded to sit in my den and giggle like school girls.

One of the widows lives across the street. She had welcomed us to use her trash can if we needed to because ours was full. We shoved some of the remnants of the open house into her can. I picked up the phone and called her.

“Ms. Betty, I just wanted you to know that we took you up on your offer to put some trash into your container.”

“Oh, honey, any time. I don’t have much. And oh, thank you so much for the party. It was so nice. I had such a good time. I just think it’s wonderful y’all do that.”

“I’m so glad you enjoyed yourself.”

Yes, I was properly scolded. What to me was bothersome, was an act of love for these ladies who suffer from loneliness and even depression, especially at this time of year. Opening my home and providing a few treats was a way to serve them as Jesus would have me to do.

Where’s Jesus? He’s supposed to live in me and be shown through me. When I get so caught up in doing that I lose Jesus (and my witness) in the process, I need to be just as distraught as little Grayson. I need to find Him and put Him back in the proper place in my life and my Christmas celebration.

Merry Christ-filled Christmas, brothers and sisters in Christ!

Paula Mowery About Paula Mowery

Paula is a pastor’s wife, mom to a college student, author, acquiring editor, and speaker. No matter the hat she wears, she strives to honor God’s plan even if it means going out on a limb and leaving comfort zones. Reviewers have characterized her writing as “thundering with emotion.” Her book, Be The Blessing, won the 2014 Selah Award in the novella category. You can follow Paula on Facebook and learn more about her at her blog.

Comments

  1. Oh Paula, this deeply resonated with me this morning. Isn’t it interesting how it’s entirely possible to go about all of this Christmas festivity with a grumbling heart. I’m in the season of young children, and getting all of the baking, shopping, wrapping, and preparation done feels daunting at times. Social events feel utterly exhausting as we break from our normal routines and spend night after night out and about. There will be fussing, melt-downs, and even a short span where evening baths and stories will fall by the wayside. May we remember why we’re doing it all. May we learn to keep Jesus in the center of it all and live intentionally as we share his love with those around us. Thanks for this today. It blessed me.

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  2. “Where’s Jesus?” has been on my mind daily as the Christmas season is unfolding. I have the privilege of being with my son’s family of seven kids and you can imagine the activities! But each morning I ask your question and all seems to fall into place. Thank you for the reminder.

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  3. Stacey, I’ve been there with the young children. Whew! Blessings for extra energy. I’m so glad that this message resonated with you. Merry Christmas!

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  4. Jude, you’re so right. It’s a daily decision. Wow. Have fun with all those kiddos!

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  5. Yes! Great post and so good for this time of year. Funny that this time of year is when we can lose sight of where Jesus is. I’m glad you helped someone else, even if you didn’t realize it at the time. 🙂

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