Saturday, December 5, 2009

Let's Go to Bethlehem

I hope that I can portray accurately some of my feelings about what our family did last night. There was an event called "Let's go to Bethlehem" at a church not far from us. We had considered not going last night because Leah seems to be having a rough time cutting a tooth right now. We decided to go anyway!

This church actually constructed a "Bethlehem" that was similar to what Bethlehem was like on the night that Jesus was born. There were crowds, Roman soldiers on horses, camels, donkeys, and sheep. There was a census booth and a booth to pay your taxes. We saw a lame person begging alms. There were potters, carpenters, basket weavers, and fruit sellers. There was a synagogue where the rabbi was there to explain the Shema, "Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One" . We could look into the synagogue and see the lampstand, a scroll and a shofar. We kept walking and saw someone running and another running after him calling out "stop, thief!" and another one being brought to Roman soldiers for not paying taxes. It was quite noisy. Of course, by the time we reached the Inn, there was no room so we made our way to the stable. It's neat how there actually seemed to be a sense of awe among the visitors as we saw Mary and Joseph with baby Jesus. It seemed like we were really there on that night so long ago. But unlike most people at that time, we KNEW that the One who was born was the long awaited Messiah. Emmanuel, God with us. Then, Cameron walked over the bales of hay that were setting the scene apart from the busy street, got on his knees and bowed to that "baby Jesus". It was so special. He couldn't help himself!

I felt very teary the entire time I was there. I totally imagined that night 2000 years ago. The night that changed my entire life. The night that is my very reason for living. Jesus coming to earth in order to be the sacrifice for MY sins. He was and is my way to God!
It was such a special night for me and I am so glad we went.

O little town of Bethlehem! How still we see thee lie;
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep, the silent stars go by;
Yet in thy dark streets shineth the everlasting Light;
The hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight.

Those are the words to my favorite Christmas carol. I just love that last line "the hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight." Everything is about Jesus and He is the answer to my hopes, my fears, my everything!


melanie said...

this looks great!! i wouldve loved to go too!! what a great experience. you did a great job portraying everything!

ajnrileysmommy said...

interesting! i think there is something similar to that around here...maybe we should go now. thanks for the push! love you