15 December 2010

in which i am a slow learner.

i unflap a cardboard box soft from years of waiting in damp spaces, pull out a painted tin stable and slide it deep on the shelf of our dining room window.

the littles jostle and crowd to help peel back layers of tissue from each resin figure, and we take turns assembling the scene: the angel, the wise men (who were a bit ahead of schedule), the donkey, a pair of awfully cute sheep. a shepherd. proud, bewildered parents. baby Jesus in a feed box.

after the kiddos have scampered off to find play or sleep, my inner perfectionist is unleashed. i rearrange the small pieces just so: the wise guys stage right and facing outward, monsieur shepherd and his duo of wooly folk opposite the Christ child, angled at such a degree that we can see how his face alights with wonder.

perfecto.

the next morning, however, i amble past the window to find that someone has rearranged my rearrangement:



and so i scoot the pieces out, spin them a good one-eighty so i can see their faces again, stagger small figures with large until the composition's right.

i walk away.

and lo and behold, i happen by the window not twenty minutes later to find that my little rearranger is persistent:



and i say, guys! in the general direction of the kids. (in my vocabulary guys is an equal opportunity term pertaining to all sexes.) and i say, who keeps messing with this? who keeps crowding everyone around the manger and giving us this fantastic view of their backs?

and i'm working whilst complaining, ever the multi-tasker, swinging each figure out and around to face us, making them back off and spread out, and you know. look right.

and the kids blink at me and one of them says quiet-like, mom. but they came to see Jesus, right?

oh.

right.

i pause with a sheep in one hand, marinate in my foolishness for a moment. and of course they came to see Jesus, the one who forges stars and gives planetary systems a twirl and washes a winter sunrise soft with cream. of course they're pressing close around Jesus.

and so the children help me again, and we turn and scoot every wise man, every shepherd and angel and sheep and donkey to huddle close to God the Son, our hearts revolving around the hope of all creation.





"The people walking in darkness
have seen a great light...
For unto us a child is born." (Isaiah 9.2&6)


16 comments:

Jennifer Shults said...

dontcha just love it when they teach you. definitely one of the finer moments as a mom... means you are doing something very right. :) i always love these posts from you nic. they always make me smile and my heart hurt just a little bit that our kids have never had the chance to run about together.

Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

I took similar pictures for a nearly-identical post. Kids sure are smarter than us, sometimes.

kendal said...

mine are a little older than yours. had the same conversation three years ago, maybe? now he's all the way in charge. precious!

Kelly said...

Faith like a child. Priceless.

Sami Jo said...

Love your nativity set! Reminds me of something Pauly was saying the other day - I have a really bad habit of listening to hip hop. I clean house to it I'm a station-changer! Are you? I AM! Anyhow, that song "Like a G6" came on and if you don't know what it is You HAVE to go Youtube it... (waiting for you to youtube it... lol! Anyhow, Pauly (3) started singing it "Thank you Jesus - Thank you Jesus" and it touched my heart and I thought WHAT THE HECK am I listening to? I changed it then and there to KLOVE and it hasn't moved since...

Mrs Soup said...

It's amazing what the children can do. Beautiful story.

mindi jo said...

First of all, thank you for stopping by my blog. Stop by again :)

Secondly, what a lightball moment. Sometimes I, too, get so worried about how things are "supposed" to be, I miss the lesson God is wanting to teach me. I especially love when my kiddos teach me truths so simple.

{the vintage wren} said...

I love this, kids truly get the things we often forget.

Jen said...

I am currently looking at my kids nativity set and sure enough all the characters of that special day are crowding around, looking towards the one that has become savior to many. It's a wonder, the daily lessons I learn and relearn from my children. Beautiful post as always.

fleetfeet said...

Oh Nic - I love this. The inner workings of our home, our family, our soul. Thank you for sharing.

lulu and family said...

precious, nicole. precious insight those children/that child has.=) i think i have some rearranging to do...

Dana @ Bungalow'56 said...

This is truly precious. And the pictures... made me swoon.

Dana @ Bungalow'56 said...

This is truly precious. And the pictures... made me swoon.

Jen said...

I am currently looking at my kids nativity set and sure enough all the characters of that special day are crowding around, looking towards the one that has become savior to many. It's a wonder, the daily lessons I learn and relearn from my children. Beautiful post as always.

mindi jo said...

First of all, thank you for stopping by my blog. Stop by again :)

Secondly, what a lightball moment. Sometimes I, too, get so worried about how things are "supposed" to be, I miss the lesson God is wanting to teach me. I especially love when my kiddos teach me truths so simple.

Sami Jo said...

Love your nativity set! Reminds me of something Pauly was saying the other day - I have a really bad habit of listening to hip hop. I clean house to it I'm a station-changer! Are you? I AM! Anyhow, that song "Like a G6" came on and if you don't know what it is You HAVE to go Youtube it... (waiting for you to youtube it... lol! Anyhow, Pauly (3) started singing it "Thank you Jesus - Thank you Jesus" and it touched my heart and I thought WHAT THE HECK am I listening to? I changed it then and there to KLOVE and it hasn't moved since...