Summary: A Christmas Eve Sermon about the colors of Christmas in the manger.
Christmas Eve Lk. 2:1-20 “Christmas Colors”
A window opened in the yellow straw, as a black nose, two pinkish ears and a gray paw poked out to see the strange sound in that stable. The gray little mouse saw the brown hues of the ox, the donkey and the camel in the silver glow of that star. In the glow of the lantern and fire burning brightly, he saw the lambs with their white coats shinning , baaing softly as their attention was riveted on the manger which used to be their feed trough. the little mouse began to wonder out loud about this strange occurrence in the stable by the inn.
He wondered,” Why are the mother and father here in this stable this night?” Why is there a baby sleeping quietly in the manger? Why are the inn keeper and his wife smiling so softly?”
The mouse could not answer his own questions, but the wise owl who had been sitting high in the rafters, flew down to the mouse and began to speak.
“You see, my little mouse friend, ( quite a statement coming from an owl, but this was indeed a strange night) those people are Mary and Joseph. They came to Bethlehem for the census, but because they had to travel slowly, they arrived late. The inn was full. But the inn keeper knowing they needed a quiet place because the baby was coming soon, thought this stable would be an ideal place. The baby was born a little while ago, they named him Jesus. The innkeeper and his wife are checking to see that everything is ok.”
The little mouse began to speak, but just then a band of shepherds dressed in drab brown clothing came in the stable breathless and full of excitement. The little gray mouse ran into the pile of straw for safety as the owl flew again to the rafters to watch. In the darkness of the straw, the mouse could not see or hear much. He couldn’t wait to peek out of his little window again, but for now he thought it best to remain hidden in the straw.
Time past. The mouse peeked out again. It was all quiet. the shepherds were gone, Mary and Joseph and baby Jesus were sleeping quietly. The little mouse looked up to the rafters, the wise owl saw him and flew down.
The mouse asked eagerly, “What happened? Why did the shepherds come?”
The wise owl answered, “What I am going to tell you, I couldn’t believe. But after the shepherds told Mary and Joseph so many time, I began to believe it, too.”
“Belief what?” ask ed the mouse.
“Oh,” said the owl, “ I guess I’d better begin at the beginning. The shepherds said they were attending their sheep on the hillside outside of Bethlehem. Everything was quiet, when an angel appeared in the sky.
The angel said, ‘Be not afraid, I bring you good news of great joy, for to you is born this day.... a Saviour who is Christ the Lord.’ The shepherds continued then the angel was joined by a whole host of angels singing glory to God in the highest. The shepherds told Mary and Joseph, the angel informed them where to find the baby here in the stable wrapped in white clothes lying in a manger. So they hurried to see if it was true. And sure enough it was true.”
The little mouse asked, “Isn’t this strange?”
The owl answered, “I heard May and Joseph talking aster everyone left. It seems they knew this baby was special because an angel appeared to them many months ago. Told them what name they should give to this baby. Imagine that.”
The little mouse could not understand all of this. He wasn’t as wise as the owl. But he understood that something very special, something very wonderful had happened in his stable, by his pile of yellow straw this night. he watched as the baby Jesus stirred in the manger and Mary dressed in a blue robe comforted him by humming softly and cradling him in her arms. It was such a wonderful sight. The donkey, the ox, the camel were all breathing softly and it seemed they were humming along. the owl flew to the top of the rafters again as the silver light from that strange bright star shone, it seemed, more brightly bringing a warm glow to all in that stable. the little mouse fell asleep feeling warm and happy, wondering what it all meant.
The little mouse saw, experienced and learned about the Christmas even, but he could not understand it. he fell asleep wondering what it all meant. I wonder how many of us really understand Christmas? I wonder if we are as perplexed as that little mouse at the events which we relive this evening and tomorrow? I wonder if there is a certain mystery about Christ that is just difficult to understand.