You got to love it – the children’s Christmas play in your home church, complete with angels and shepherds, wise men bringing their gifts, various animals, and of course Joseph and Mary with their baby. Yep – it definitely had the cute factor! Never mind that half of them forgot their lines (as well as their cues), a lot of singing was off-key and the toddlers kept disrupting things. This was their day, and they were going to get the job done.
My favourite parts had to include losing baby Jesus, the angel’s words to Joseph “Sorry, no take-backs” (regarding Mary) and a shepherd getting told off by a sheep (or was it a lion?) for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Adults would never get away with these things. Their acting careers would be over.
Here’s Mary and Joseph, beaming over the gifts they received from the wise men. I thought they played their parts really well. By the way, in the real story these gifts had great significance. Gold was given to Kings; Frankincense was an incense offered only to deity, and Myrrh was used to prepare the dead for burial. There’s a message for us here: Jesus is God’s Son, the King of kings, who came to die for our sin.
Check out the young musicians on the right (with the exception of William, HBC’s worship leader on the left!). Goodness, we have some good things ahead for us with this lot. Thanks Chiedozie, Nnedima and Ijeoma – you did a great job!
I didn’t catch a picture of Ruth Richardson, who put this whole thing together (well done Ruth!). But here are some of her helpers – working hard to get the kids singing as well as helping them be in the right place at the right time!
OK, great play. But did the children actually learn anything? Well I think some learned the importance of knowing their lines. One or two learned how not to use a microphone. And the older kids learned that toddlers have a mind of their own. Aside from those things – yes I think they did learn something. They learned that the story of Jesus’ birth really is important. It’s important enough to be passed on from generation to generation. It’s important enough to be retold exactly how the Bible records it. And it’s important enough to give a good deal of a morning service to retell it, even by a group of kids who only half know their lines.
I’ll leave you with one last picture: here are the kids looking eagerly on as Mary and Joseph receive gifts from the wise men. My prayer for them is that when they are older, their hearts would be captured with the same wonder as they are experiencing here, regarding the glorious reality of God sending His Son into the world… for them.