I love this tradition!
A local church, Community of Hope, has lots of property. They re-create the Biblical town of Bethlehem, complete with angry Roman soldiers, every Christmas. Hundreds of volunteers dress in costume and stay in character as visitors begin their journey to the town with gruff orders from the soldiers.
From there, all families must register, the father or oldest son being responsible.
When we’re actually able to enter the city, we hear from a Rabbi that interesting happenings have been going on. We’re to look for the child shepherds told of. So we stroll through the town, as villagers hawk their wares. We sample bread, spices, watch families create walking sticks, have dinner, and we try to stay out of trouble as the soldiers herd us through. It’s such a great time. We’ve been enjoying this for several years.
The best part is the end. Finally, we find the stable, after the inn keeper tells us he has no room. We sit and look at the live Nativity and sing “Silent Night” together. Just the voices blended in worship.
And I’m always overwhelmed, looking at some little baby,
that Jesus, GOD ALMIGHTY,
willingly humbled Himself
to take on human flesh and become a baby!
Oh the wonder! It never gets old!
Jesus isn’t just the Reason for the Season
JESUS IS THE SEASON!!