Raoul’s Two Cents: December 16, 2022
O What a Night!
If you’ve been reading my emails, you probably remember that I was in a small town called Dalipuga last month to be with my Dad. Did you know that there was a lunar eclipse on November 8? Someone in my chat room mentioned it was coming and I shared it with my friends but it seemed like I was the only one excited about it.
So I stepped outside into the dimly lit garden (minus the distraction of the city lights) and watched the eerie orange shadow of the earth pass over the full moon. Although a solar eclipse is more dramatic, the beauty of a lunar eclipse is you can watch the cosmic show with your eyes wide open (no squinting).
How sad that no one was there to share my joy.
Maybe this was how Mary and Joseph felt looking down at their new born son, the promised Messiah, — wrapped up in swaddling cloths in a manger. If there ever was a need for encouragement it was that night.
Scripture says the night when Christ was born in Bethlehem, there were shepherds hanging out in the open fields when “poof!” — an angel appeared in front of them and shared the great news:
“Dudes, don’t be afraid!” said the angel. “Have I got news for you! Remember the Messiah they talked about in Sunday school? Well, he’s heeeeeeere!”
The shepherds must have looked at each other wondering who spiked their drinks. But before they could start accusing each other, thousands more angels popped up in the sky singing the latest radio hit … your favorite and mine — Joy to the world! — in high fidelity heavenly sound! It must have been an amazing concert. (Luke 2:14)
All jazzed up, the shepherds went to check it out for themselves. They must have scoured the city of David; starting with the reunion parties that were in full swing in the rich areas befitting a king. To their surprise, the only baby born that night was sleeping in a makeshift cradle in an animal trough.
If you think the shepherds were surprised, you should have caught the look in Joseph and Mary’s faces seeing these toothless smiling strangers peering down at their baby. Definitely, a Kodak moment.
Mary must have looked at Joseph and said, “now do you believe me?”
The shepherds did what shepherds do best: they texted their buddies and the news went viral. Soon the whole town came and joined the party in the manger. I wouldn’t be surprised if the inn keeper moved his guests around and gave the family a decent room.
I can imagine proud Joseph shooing the crowd away — “Thanks for coming! We get it! Our child is the Messiah … but it’s time to go! Mary just gave birth and she’s tired and we need to get some sleep. Good night! Good night!”
It is said that Mary treasured all of the events in her heart (— the selfies, the thumbs up, and the high fives). The crowd left glorifying and praising God for the amazing evening. — Luke 2:21
O little town of Bethlehem,
How still we see thee lie!
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by;
Yet in the dark street shineth
The everlasting Light;
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight.
Of course I exaggerated some of the incidents that awesome night but I hope it made you see a familiar scene In a different light. Read the gospel of Luke, Chapter 2 for the genuine story of the birth of Christ. Christmas is next weekend. Are you excited? TGIF people!
“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.’” — Luke 2: 13-14
Joke of the Week
Thanks to Jose of LA county
Thanks to Maling of New Manila, Philippines
Thanks to Art of Sierra Madre, CA
I found these
My good friend (and jokester) Terry and I came up with these.