Since childhood, I’ve loved ‘The the Night Before Christmas’. I vividly remember sitting with my mother as she slowly recited the words and turned the pages of the book that held a special spot on our family room coffee table each Christmas. It didn’t matter that I didn’t know what a kerchief was or that I’d never tasted a sugarplum, I longed to for such a night.
A couple of years ago, I was asked to address the children of our church in our Christmas Eve service and found myself wishing I could capture the wonder and beauty of Jesus’ birth. As I began studying the Gospel accounts and Old Testament prophesies, the purposeful cadence of Clement C. Moore’s enchanting poem echoed through my mind.
Thank you, Mr. Moore, for your beautiful poem and as a seminarian and Bible scholar, I hope you don’t mind that I borrowed your cadence to tell the story of our dear Savior’s birth.
Our Dear Savior’s Birth
‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the earth
The scene was set for our dear Savior’s birth.
A remarkable star hung in the night sky,
To witness the miracle commencing nearby.
Magi believed it was the sign of a king,
To him, gold, frankincense, and myrrh they would bring.
Shepherds keeping watch o’re their flocks thru the night,
Would soon behold a most glorious sight.
Angels stood ready, hovering poised to proclaim,
“Glory to God and in peace he will reign”
To the City of David, a young couple was bound,
But upon their arrival no room could be found.
Joseph felt anxious, but he chose not to fear,
When Mary’s time to give birth was suddenly near.
Pain mixed with peace met unmatchable joy,
And time would be marked with the birth of this boy.
Mary remembered the angel, who said she found grace,
When Jesus was born she stared grace in the face.
She beheld her son with ten fingers and toes,
She swaddled him and kissed his sweet little nose.
Prince of Peace! Lord of lords! King of Kings! Rising Sun!
Son of God! Son of Man! Great I Am! Holy One!
Explain your Father to us – who loves beyond all.
Explain your Father to us – that is your call.
As you existed when the world was created,
Now God is with us, oh, how long we have waited!
Then out in the fields, the shepherds heard singing,
And angels appeared – what good news they were bringing!
So to town the men hurried—their feet taking flight.
“A Savior is born in our city tonight!”
Finding baby Jesus in a manger of hay,
“The angels, they told us we’d find him this way!”
From the East Magi trekked with the star as their guide,
In time the star’s light led to Jesus’ side.
The moment they saw him, pulled gifts from their packs
And with worship and bounty they did not hold back.
Little Jesus – he laughed! He giggled and cooed.
He toddled and waddled and walked he grew.
His family was Jewish and they raised him this way.
It was Moses’ Law they sought to obey.
So at the right time, they gave an offering of love,
On the altar they sacrificed two turtledoves.
Sanctifying this child and setting him apart,
Gives us a glimpse of his dear Father’s heart.
Joseph and Mary treasured all they were told,
How a plan for salvation was to unfold.
Jesus would flourish a wise man among men
And would offer himself and would not condemn.
For God so loved the world, he gave us his Son,
To all who believe, life eternal will come.
On this silent night, and throughout this glorious season,
Enjoy every minute remembering Jesus is the reason.
When you open a present, tied with ribbons and bows,
Think to yourself of all the love that it shows.
One last thought I will leave on this pre-Christmas night,
“God knows you and loves you with all of his might.”