Friday, December 15, 2017

No Baby Jesus

November 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Daily Manna, Monthly Articles

When I travel, I meet a kaleidoscope of people. I can tell a lot about them by how they dress, how they talk, or even the things they collect.

A friend and I stopped to eat lunch at her brother’s house. The sprawling farm was nestled among other historic buildings on the edge of a quaint town. Their open kitchen looked like a rustic gift shop. Baskets and wind chimes hung from the beam across the ceiling. A collection of antique cream pitchers lined the window sills. A water fountain with a family of ceramic turtles decorated the kitchen counter. Everywhere you looked there were figurines, paintings, books, and objects that came from Africa to Italy.

Our hosts ordered sandwiches from a deli down the street and offered frappacinos to drink. As we ate lunch, they talked of their travels all over the world. They told us their son would soon graduate from medical school. They described their daughter’s wedding, whose ceremony was performed by someone a guy with a graying ponytail named Won” The whole conversation was interesting, but quite foreign to my kind of life.

As I padded through the soft carpeted hallways, peeking into beautiful bedrooms and libraries and various living rooms, I noticed a display case of figurines. I knew them! They were Santon villagers-a man pushing a cart, a woman carrying a basket, a farmer with a pitchfork, etc. – a crèche made in Marseilles, France. As I exclaimed over them, her brother mentioned that they had about forty of them, the whole set – except for one which he didn’t think to be important…except for Baby Jesus.

My friend and I continued our travels. Later that evening, we visited another family which was grieving the loss of a son. The hostess stepped back to let us enter their tiny living area. The only decorations on the walls were photos of her grandchildren and paintings of flowers. I assumed that she had created them herself, for I saw an easel in a tiny side room.

In broken English, she invited us to sit around a table covered by a clean cotton tablecloth and a pot of orchids in its center. She offered us butter cookies in a tin and glasses of cool water. There was a calmness and peacefulness about us. We talked of our childhoods and mutual friends. She and her daughter talked of their lives in Guatemala and how they tried to tell their neighbors and family about the Lord. We talked and laughed until I realized that it was late. I didn’t want to leave.
That night, I compared the two homes. Why was one so much more welcoming and comfortable to me? The first house appealed to my curiosity of things beyond my way of living, but I didn’t feel relaxed. It was more like a museum than a home. The second one, even in the midst of sorrow,  was filled with laughter and love for their Lord and Savior. A sorrow brought us together, but there was a joy of eternal hope. Even with the cultural differences, we had the common language of the Holy Spirit.

One home didn’t have Jesus; the other was filled with Him.


“But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another…” (I John 1:7, KJV)

Lord, may others see You in my home, my speech, and my life.  — Yvonne Blake

 

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Yvonne Beverly Blake has been blessed with an interesting childhood. She has lived in the deserts of Arizona, the tropic islands of the Bahamas, the rugged hills of New York, the farmlands of mid-Maine. Her father was a school teacher and pastor, and her mother was a nurse. Her memory – a virtual parade of settings, experiences, and characters – contributes to her writing.

Yvonne and her husband, Randy raised a family of eight children on the coast of Maine. Their family has been her focus over the last thirty years, giving her storerooms of material to draw from. Striving to do their best, regardless of the opinions of others, they often lived out of step with the rest of the world. Yvonne taught each of her eight children to read. When the youngest was school age, Yvonne taught grades K-3 at a Christian school for twelve years, also 4th-6th grade English and high school French. Now that her children have grown,  she  has chosen to stay home and write.

To promote well-written children’s literature, Yvonne has developed Polliwog Pages, a website for parents, authors, and young writers. She has also sold some articles to Highlights for Children (High Five) and published a few e-books on Smashwords. She hopes to publish a missionary story and a middle-grade novel soon. Her prayer is to be used of the Lord, to encourage and bless others with her writing.  You can reach Yvonne at the following: 

My Portfolio
My Back Door
Polliwog Pages
Smashwords.com

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