Monday, December 17, 2018

The Christmas Story

Paraphrased from Luke

A long time ago, in the town of Nazareth, lived a young woman named Mary.  Mary loved God very much.  She was engaged to be married to Joseph, who was a carpenter.
One day, while Mary was at home, an angel suddenly appeared.  Before Mary could say anything the angel told Mary that she was favored by God, and that God was with her. Mary was surprised.  The angel quickly tried to reassure Mary, "Do not be afraid!"  the angel said.  "God has found favor with you.  You will have a baby boy, and are to give him the name Jesus."
Mary was confused, she was not yet married to Joseph, so how could she have a baby?  The angel thought that this might concern Mary so he said, "The Holy Spirit will perform a miracle, and because of this your baby will be called  the Son of God."
To Mary's surprise the angel had more exciting news;  "Even your cousin Elizabeth is going to have a son in her old age.  Many thought that she couldn't have children, but she is already pregnant.  Nothing is impossible with God."
Mary couldn't believe what she was hearing, she didn't know what to say.  She realized that she was trembling, and knelt down.  When she was finally able to speak she said, "I am the Lord's servant, and I hope everything you have said will come true."   The angel then disappeared, and Mary was left alone.
Soon after, Joseph found out that Mary was going to have a baby.  Joseph was confused and upset by this. But an angel came to him in a dream and said, "Joseph do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife.  The child Mary is going to have is God's son, and you are to give him the name Jesus."
When Joseph woke up he remembered what the angel had said.  He knew that everything was okay, and he wasn't upset anymore.  
In those days the government decided that they should count everyone that lived in that area of the world.  So Joseph had to take Mary to his town, Bethlehem to register.  It took Mary and Joseph a long time to get to Bethlehem.  They didn't have cars back then, so it probably took them a lot longer to get there.  This was very tiring for Mary because she was soon going to have a baby.
When they reached the town, all the inns were full and there was nowhere that they could stay.   Someone offered a stable for them to stay.  Mary and Joseph were thankful that they at least had a place to lay down.  It was warm, and there was plenty of straw to lay on.  That night an exciting, wonderful thing happened.  Mary and Joseph had a baby!  But it wasn't just any baby, it was Baby Jesus!  The creator of the whole world, the King of Kings, the one who would save the world.  The little baby boy fell asleep in Mary's arms and she wrapped him in cloths and laid him in a manger.

Discussion Questions

  • Where did Joseph go to be counted?  To Bethlehem
  • Who went with him? Mary, because she was engaged to him.
  • What happened while they were in Bethlehem? It was time for Mary to have the baby.
  • Did she have a bed for him? No, she laid him in a feed box.
  • What was the baby’s name?     Jesus!


Dear God,
Thank you for the story of Baby Jesus.  Thank you for teaching us that you do what you promise, and you help us to always be happy.

Bible Verse for December

“I bring you great news; Jesus is born.”
Luke 2:10-11

Home Connect

Sit down as a family and talk about family birthdays.  What do you do to celebrate the birth of each child in the family?  What made each child’s birthday good news?  What makes Jesus’ birthday good news?  It is so awesome Jesus was born to save us from our sins!  What a gift we have in Jesus!

My Recipe Center

Remember Jesus' birth by making “babies” in swaddling clothes.  Remind your child to wash his or her hands.  Open a can of breadstick dough, and have your child pull the breadstick apart.  Help your child wrap a hot dog in each portion of the dough, leaving the top of the hot dog unwrapped as the baby’s head.  Bake according to the package directions.  Say a prayer of thanks with your child, and enjoy the snacks.   

  • Tell about what you think is exciting about Jesus’ birth. 
  • Who can you tell that Jesus was born?

 Daily Challenge

This week, your child learned that Jesus was born.  Encourage your child to commit to one of the following  challenges to celebrate the birth of Jesus.  Help your child weave faith into life this week and follow through on the challenges.

  • Make a present for Jesus such as a craft, picture, or card.  Tell Jesus that the present is for his birthday and that you are glad he was born to help us.
  • Sing “Silent Night” with your family.
  • Sit in a circle with your family and tell each other why you’re thankful for Jesus’ birth.