Sow Joy - Sunday

Mary | Luke 1:46-55
When I was young, my church hosted a Christmas pageant.
Families would show up on Christmas Eve
With diaper bags and children thrown over their shoulders.
No amount of Silent Night could quiet that room.
It was a holy and beautiful chaos.

What was special about that church Christmas pageant,
Was we, the children, got to pick our character in the story.
So for one night, we could be Magi in Burger King crowns.
We could be angels with wings made of clothes hangers.
We could be shepherds in bathrobes, protecting the flock.
We could be Mary, beautiful and brave.

And the preacher would stand on the steps
And tell us the Christmas story,
And as our character entered the scene,
We would run down the center aisle and assume our place at the manger.
(As an aside: Is there anything more holy than seeing a child
Run down that center aisle, as if getting closer to God is all they have in mind?)

And as the story progressed, the front steps would become crowded
With dozens of Magi and a wide array of animals,
But I would always choose Mary.

I would always choose Mary—
Mary the teen mom.
Mary who said, “My soul magnifies the Lord.”
Mary who sang.

For even at that age, even as a child,
We could tell that Mary was afraid, and into that dark, Mary sang.

So I and most of the other little girls in the church that night,
Would tighten the blue bed sheets draped around our shoulders,
And run down the center aisle when our name was called.
For in that moment,
We were on our way.
In that moment,
We were those who dream.
In that moment,
We were all Mary.
In that moment,
We were brave.
Poem by Sarah Are
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