Early December I was preparing a message about the Nativity for Primary.My visual aids for the day were to be the three mangers (and babies) from our three nativity sets.After locating two, I realized that our third manger was missing its Baby Jesus.At first I was disappointed that my lesson was wrecked, but then realized that maybe we could learn a different kind of lesson.
I took my three mangers and two babies to Primary and explained we’d put the nativities up early, excited about the “true meaning” of Christmas.But somehow in the week prior, during wrapping the presents and setting up the tree that somehow the baby Jesus had gotten lost in the shuffle!We talked about how sometimes that happens in our own lives—that in the other exciting parts of Christmas we may “lose sight” of what matters most.We decided that each of us could “look for Jesus” during the following week.
Two weeks came and went.The first Sunday children reported their successes in “finding Jesus” and I told them that I was going to have to spend another week looking.(I secretly hoped I’d set myself up for a great Christmas finale.)But, embarrassingly, even on the day after Christmas when the children asked about if I’d found Him, I had to admit that even though I’d prayed (like they’d encouraged) He was still nowhere to be found.I felt like I’d missed my great chance for a learning moment.
As we took our Christmas tree decorations down a few days later, I heard a holler from the family.I came from the other room to find the baby Jesus…having just been pulled out from under the tree stand.
Our family and Primary learned at the beginning of this New Year that:
Prayers are answered…it just might take a little while.