12.17.2007

Santa At Bethlehem



THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS! A BEAUTIFUL NIGHT!
THE AIR WAS SO CRISP AND THE STARS WERE SO BRIGHT!
AND DOWN BY THE LAKE YOU COULD STILL HEAR THE RINGING
OF LAUGHTER AND SLEIGH BELLS, AND YOUNG PEOPLE SINGING.

IN ONE LITTLE HOME ON THIS WONDERFUL EVE
THE CHILDREN WERE GUESSING WHAT SANTA WOULD LEAVE.
THEY HUNG UP THEIR STOCKINGS WITH LITTLE BIG EYES
THAT SHONE WITH DELIGHT AND THE HOPE OF SURPRISE.
AND THEN MOTHER DARKENED THE LIVING ROOM LIGHT,
FOR THIS WAS THE LOVELIEST PART OF THE NIGHT.

WHEN ALL OF THE CHILDREN WERE GATHERED TO SING
"HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU" TO THE NEW LITTLE KING.
BUT A SHADOW OF SADNESS ENVELOPED THEIR JOY,
THERE WERE TEARS IN THE EYES OF THE ONE LITTLE BOY,
HE TURNED TO HIS MOTHER AND LET OUT A CRY,
"THE ANGELS WERE THERE, THE SHEPHERDS CAME BY,
THE WAY WAS SO CLEAR, AND THE STAR WAS SO BRIGHT,
DIDN’T SANTA CLAUS STOP AT THE STABLE THAT NIGHT?"

THE MOTHER WAS STUNNED – THERE WASN’T A STIR –
THE FIVE LITTLE CHILDREN WERE LOOKING AT HER.
THEY WANTED TO KNOW WHAT THE ANSWER COULD BE –
WHAT COULD SHE TELL THEM – HOW COULD THEY SEE?

THEN SHE LOOKED AT THE STABLE – THE INFANT SO SWEET,
AND SHE LOOKED AT THE MOTHER WHO KNELT AT HIS FEET.
THE BABY WAS LOVE – THE JOY OF THE LIVING,
THE MOTHER – THE ESSENCE OF SHARING AND GIVING.

AND THERE WAS THE ANSWER TO COUNTER HER FEAR,
WHAT SEEMED INCONSISTENT BECAME VERY CLEAR
FOR WHEN BEFORE CHRIST WAS THERE EVER A CAUSE
FOR ANY POOR SOUL TO EXPECT SANTA CLAUS?

YES, THE INFANT WAS LOVE AND THE JOY OF THE LIVING;
AND MARY, HER BABY WAS SHARING AND GIVING.
AND SANTA WAS THERE, A GIFT FROM ABOVE,
INVISIBLE SYMBOL OF GIVING AND LOVE.

THERE WAS JOY IN HER HEART AS SHE TENDED TO TEAR,
AND HER WORDS OVERFLOWED WITH GENUINE CHEER,
FOR HOW SHE WAS SURE THAT HER ANSWER WAS RIGHT,
"OF COURSE, SANTA CAME TO THE STABLE THAT NIGHT!"

AND OH, WITH WHAT JOY DID THE CHILDREN RECEIVE
THE STORY SHE TOLD OF THE FIRST CHRISTMAS EVE;
"THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS! A LONG TIME AGO!
AWAY TO THE NORTH IN THE LAND OF THE SNOW!

AND THERE LIVED A TOY MAKER CHEERFUL AND GOOD
WHO MADE THE MOST WONDERFUL TOYS THAT HE COULD.
BUT THERE WAS A RUMOR THAT SEEMED TO BE WILD,
THAT SANTA HAD MADE ALL THE TOYS FOR ONE CHILD.
AND YET, NO ONE EVER HEARD OF ONE TOY
THAT SANTA HAD GIVEN TO GIRL OR TO BOY.

AND SOME PEOPLE SAID THAT WHEN SANTA SLEPT SOUND,
WITH NO ONE BUT SOME OF HIS HELPERS AROUND,
THE TOYS IN THE WORKSHOP CAME DOWN FROM THE SHELVES
AND HAD THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME FOR THEMSELVES.

AND AS THEY WERE FROLICKING ONE WINTER NIGHT,
THEY SUDDENLY NOTICED A BEAUTIFUL LIGHT,
AND THEN THEY RECALLED WITH EXCITEMENT AND JOY
WHAT SANTA HAD SAID AS HE FINISHED EACH TOY,
"I FASHIONED YOU INTO A WONDERFUL THING
FOR SOMEDAY, YOU WILL BE MY GIFT TO THE KING."

WHEN SANTA CLAUS SAW THE REMARKABLE LIGHT,
HE KNEW THAT TONIGHT WAS THE GLORIOUS NIGHT.
AT LAST, AFTER ALL OF THE YEARS HE HAD WAITED,
THE INFANT WAS BORN AS THEY HAD STATED.

SO QUICKLY HE CALLED EVERY HELPER AND AIDE
TO PACK ALL THE WONDERFUL TOYS HE HAD MADE --
HE PACKED THEM ALL CAREFULLY INSIDE OF HIS SLEIGH,
AND LED BY THE STAR, HE BEGAN ON HIS WAY.

THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS! A BEAUTIFUL NIGHT!
THE AIR WAS SO CRISP, AND THE STAR WAS SO BRIGHT.
QUIET AND CALM OVER ALL BETHLEHEM LAY.
SILENCE REPLACED THE ADO OF THE DAY.

HIGH ON HILLSIDE, THE ANGELS WERE SINGING
OF PEACE, OF LOVE THE CHRIST CHILD WOULD BE BRINGING.
THERE IN THE MANGER THE INFANT WAS SLEEPING.
AND MARY AND JOSEPH A VIGIL WERE KEEPING –
A VIGIL OF LOVE, ADORATION AND PRAYER
FOR JESUS, WHOM GOD HAD ORDAINED TO THEIR CARE,
AND LATE IN THE NIGHT BY THE LIGHT FROM ABOVE,
SANTA CLAUS CAME WITH A HEART FULL OF LOVE.

HE GAZED AT THE INFANT – THE DEAR LITTLE LORD.
AND KNEELING (BOWING), HE SILENTLY PRAYED AND ADORED.
THEN SANTA AROSE AND WITHOUT A NOISE,
HE BROUGHT TO THE MOTHER THE WONDERFUL TOYS.

HE TOLD HER OF HOW HE HAD MADE EVERY ONE.
SO HE MIGHT PRESENT THEM ALL TO HER LITTLE SON.
AND THEY SAY WHEN OUR LADY BEHELD THE SURPRISE
SHE WHISPERED TO SANTA WITH TEARS IN HER EYES,
"I THANK YOU FOR WHAT YOU HAVE GIVEN MY SON.
YOUR PRESENT IS TRULY A WONDERFUL ONE.

AND THIS ABOVE ALL IS THE WORTHIEST PART,
THE LOVE THAT IS FOSTERED FOR HIM IN YOUR HEART.
BUT YOU KNOW THAT MY SON WILL BE LIKE THE OTHER BOYS
AND HE COULDN’T POSSIBLY USE THAT MANY TOYS."

SO EACH CHRISTMAS EVE, AS IF BY THE STAR
I’D LIKE YOU TO TRAVEL BOTH NEAR AND AFAR,
TO VISIT THE CHILDREN AS JINGLE BELLS RING
IN HONOR OF JESUS, THE NEW LITTLE KING.

AND SPREAD ALL YOUR LOVE AND YOUR SPIRIT OF GIVING
SO OTHERS MAY SHARE IN THE JOY OF THE LIVING.
AND OF YOU, SANTA TO TAKE ALL THE WONDERFUL TOYS,
AND GIVE THEM WITH LOVE TO THE GIRLS AND THE BOYS

FOR THAT IS WHICH YOU DO UNTO SOME OTHER ONE,
IS COUNTED AS IF IT WERE DONE FOR MY SON!"
THEN SWEETLY SHE PATTED THE TOYS WITH HER HAND,
AND PICKED FOR HER BABY, A LITTLE WHITE LAMB.