Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Nativity #15: Simplicity

The person who made this nativity (which stands about 3" tall and is molded out of clay and then painted) has an artist's eye that allowed her to suggest greater things with some pretty simple shapes. I like that.

Often God uses really simple things in my life to suggest greater things -- deep things about Himself, for example.

Eight years ago on the second Sunday in December I wandered into the 1st and 2nd grade Sunday School class at Faith Church in Indy -- they were meeting in the middle classroom above the offices as they had been for years. It was a time when the kids were gathering and doing table activities before the lesson began.

I sat down on a small chair at the table closest to the door. We were drawing nativity scenes. The smell of the Crayola crayons and the repetition of coloring felt good in the middle of the Advent season. As you might imagine, these were pretty simple drawings. Along with those simple drawings were some pretty simple conversations. Delightful ones, but appropriately simple. 

As we colored and chatted, Ali Martin reached over and patted my knee gently and said, "Miss Ruth, I'm sorry about your mom." She meant it. 

Nine days earlier, we had buried my mom in a small cemetery in rural Zionsville. Such a simple conversation about some very deep things. I thanked her and then, as we continued coloring, I asked, "Ali. Do you know where my mom is right now?"

Her response was instant. This is something that did not take much thought for her -- it was either close enough to the surface that it came quickly or it so permeated her mind that it was easy. With great enthusiasm she replied, "She'd dancing in heaven with Jesus." 

In that moment we had the whole story. Immanuel: God with us. And, because of Him, we have the hope of an eternity with God. And not just any eternity -- one filled with dancing! 

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