After weeks of rehearsal, my Christmas Pageant cast of shepherds, wise men, angels, and stable animals were ready to perform. Or so I thought.
"And a decree went forth from SY-ur-REE-uh..." my fourth grade nervous Nellie narrator began. We all felt her hesitation, including a preschool nativity rooster who belted out, "DY-uh-ree-uh?"
Things escalated when the angels began fighting over the only microphone in the balcony. First-grade Gabriel crowded his haloed head forward and bumped a kindergarten angel off the mike. Then much to her dismay, he rubbed off the white feathers from her furry arms. Wings flapped, and the angel chorus nearly took flight. "Glooooooooria! Gloooooria!" they sang as I continued conducting from below, my arms flailing like the angelic ones above. The audience howled with laughter as they watched the battle in the heavenly places. For many, this was the highlight of our Christmas pageant.
Will your holiday highlight be as unscripted?
Leave room for it to be. Save dates to savor the unexpected guest or opportunity. “Snow days” are always welcomed! And when things don’t go as planned---they might just turn out better!
After all, Jesus didn’t arrive the way anyone thought He would. The shepherds on night watch didn’t expect an angel choir singing “Gloria.” Nobody thought a King would be born in a cave and placed in a manger trough. Who had time for this astonishing arrival?
What about us? Would we have been ready to host? Or ready to celebrate? Sometimes the squares on my calendar are too full to fully embrace a special surprise. The UPSIDE is that we can choose to leave room for the unexpected this Christmas season.
**Excerpt from December 2nd devotion “Preparing My Heart for Advent: A Spiritual Pilgrimage for the Christmas Season. Click here to purchase your copy of the Bible Study!**