Summary: A Poetic sermon for Christmas eve, based on Luke’s story of the nativity
Christmas Eve December 24, 2009 Luke 2: 1-20
Grace be unto you and peace, from God our Father and from our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Let us pray: Gracious Christ, babe at Bethlehem, who is also Lord of lords and king of kings, enable us to praise you, not only with our lips in songs of praise, but also with our lives in deeds of love and mercy. May you find room in our hearts, not just this joyous night, but through the days and years that lie ahead. For to you belongs the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.
According to Luke’s, inspired Christmas story,
The first hint revealed, of God’s redeeming glory,
‘Twas when an angel told Mary, she would give birth,
To God’s very Son, who’d make his advent to earth.
But since Mary was a virgin, still in her teens,
She was puzzled, and questioned, to know by what means,
God hoped to accomplish, his Son’s incarnation,
In light of her current, marital situation.
But although Gabriel told her, she shouldn’t fear,
Mary knew that God’s Law, was specifically clear,
For to become pregnant, before her marriage feast,
Would bring great shame upon her, at the very least.
For in those day, there was a sense of piety,
Embraced by near all, who lived in society,
Upholding marriage to be, God’s sacred estate,
For the begetting of Children, to one’s own mate.
Thus, when Mary discovered, that she was with child,
We can assume that Joseph, became rather riled,
When she came to him, with the humble admission,
That his betrothed was in, a pregnant condition.
For what was he to think, of Mary’s strange story,
That she had been chosen, to receive God’s Glory,
By conceiving a child, though no man she had known –
‘Twas God’s will for her life, through no fault of her own.
Thus Joseph assumed, Mary chose to denigrate,
The fidelity he placed, in his future mate,
So in order to save, the honor of his name,
He planned a quiet divorce, to save them from shame.
But again God acted, through a cognitive dream,
Telling Joseph that he, should honor and esteem,
His love for his betrothed, to take her as his wife,
To cherish and respect her, the rest of his life.
Again as a result, of God’s intervention,
Joseph set aside, society’s convention,
And Followed the direction, God did provide,
By quickly taking Mary, to be his cherished bride.
Thus, each of this young couple, was led to embrace,
Beginning their marriage, by trusting in God’s grace,
To lead them through, these early turmoil’s of life,
To calm their anxieties, and to soothe their strife.
So Joseph, a carpenter, worked hard to provide,
A new house, in which, the two of them might reside,
In the small town of Nazareth, in Galilee,
While planning for fatherhood, with expectant glee.
But when the birth of Mary’s child, seemed close at hand,
Joseph received word, of the Emperor’s demand,
That all who lived, under Roman occupation,
Must personally enroll, for new taxation.
The decree also stated, he had to return,
To the town of his birth, which increased his concern,
Since the census insisted, he must take his wife,
Who was at full term, about to bring forth, new life.
Once again this couple, had to trust in God’s grace,
To see them through this ordeal, that they had to face,
As the trip to Bethlehem, traversed rugged land,
O’er narrow mountain roads, and across desert sand.
And again their trust, in God’s providence proved right,
As they safely entered Bethlehem, late one night,
Hoping to find the warmth, and comfort of a room,
To provide needed rest, for this young bride and groom.
But unfortunately, their hope would not be met,
As the rooms in the inn, had already been let,
Yet the innkeeper offered, a place they could stay,
If they were willing to make, a bed out of hay.
Joseph accepted his offer, there to abide:
Straightened the hay, a bed for Mary to provide;
Secured their donkey, with a loose fitting tether;
Closed the stable door, to the cold winter weather.
Then he trimmed the lantern, safely hung from a beam;
Made bands of cloth from his cloak, undoing each seam;
Fixed a cradle from a feed trough, raised on a stand,
Then supported his young bride, by holding her hand.
Yes, ‘twas there in that stable, that Jesus was born,
His fragile body wrapped warm, in clothes that were torn,
Then laid in a manger, on a fresh bed of hay,
To sleep through the cold night, till the sun warmed the day.
Yet, though their accommodations, were rather crude,
It did not give this young couple, reason to brood,