Archive for the ‘Christmas stories’ Tag

AND HIS NAME SHALL BE CALLED

AND HIS NAME SHALL BE CALLED

Nestled snugly to her breasts the baby wrapped in cloth

was cradled in his mother’s arms, her voice comforting and soft.

The beating of her heart, her milk and warm embrace

left him feeling so content when he looked into her face.

Livestock gathered near to ward off wind and chill;

They shared their sheltered space quiet, cold and still.

Heaven’s glory filled the skies immersing them in joy.

Radiant beams of light gushed towards the baby boy.

The story of his birth was heard throughout the land,

“The prophesied Messiah is born in Bethlehem.”

People came from all around to see the child king,

“Where is he that is born those angels about him sing?”

There was much rejoicing as shepherds ran to see

the baby born to the world, the prophesied to be.

Magi heard the news traveling from places far

with gifts for the baby king guided by the star.

Kneeling before the Savior they stretched out hands in praise;

God’s unfolding gift of love, how awesome His wondrous ways.

Mary pondered all these things and marveled how, that He

from one; a virgin came the Son of God, Jesus, Majesty.

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MERRY CHRISTMAS, ALL!  

Joyce E. Johnson (2013)

Footnotes: Although I published this post last Christmas I am re-posting it again with my wishes to all for a very blessed and wonderful Christmas and a happy new year in 2015.

Memories from Christmas’ past

My sisters and I one Christmas, a very long time ago. I am the youngest and smallest one.

My sisters and I one Christmas, a very long time ago. I am the youngest and smallest one.

 

Fudge cooking on the stove, hot steaming cocoa with floating plump marshmallows, taffy pulls, popcorn balls, caroling, recitals and Christmas pageants with new taffeta dresses, candles lit in window sills and trees with bright bulbs and multi-colored lights.  Sneaking around, spying in the attic for those illusive hidden presents I found. The memories linger like the smell of my mother’s fudge and Christmas cookies.

Listening for ‘sleigh bells’, thumps or bumps of Santa’s landing on roof tops and reindeer hooves touching down are the things I imagined, but never saw. Like any child I believed in Santa too. In the town I was from (Colorado Springs) there is a favorite popular Christmas place, North Pole. It is a magical Christmas village full of little cottages, toy stores, confections and the smells of all kinds of sweet treats, a real herd of reindeer, sleigh and of course a Santa Clause and Mrs. Clause. I loved visiting Santa there, but knew eventually that he did not really fly around the world in a sleigh on Christmas Eve. There came a day when I spotted Santa walking down Main street wearing a business suit, just like a scene from one of my favorite movies, Miracle on 34th St. I was older then, and knew the truth about his ‘job’ as the Santa at North Pole, but he brought so much happiness to children with his gentle nature, warm embrace, love and generosity to children like me before his death. Yet, ‘Santa’s legend lives on.

But, there is another one I came to believe in more as I listened to the story told and retold of a baby born to a virgin Mary in the little town of Bethlehem, Israel over 2,000 years ago. He became more real to me than any imaginative friend I could have dreamed of.  I learned how He loves me, lives on, will never die or leave me, and is always there for me. He sacrificed his life for us all so we could know him in a way that surpasses any imagined, or anyone who ever lived. That baby was Jesus, a Savior and Redeemer born to all the world. He is the reason I celebrate this Christmas, then and now, as I came to know Him, personally. His story is found in Luke, chapter 2, New Testament Bible, not a legend, but a truth, real, and God’s gift to us that lives on, continues to give and be received.

I wish all my blogger friends, readers and followers out there a very blessed and Merry Christmas, and a happy, prosperous year in 2015. Thank you for reading, commenting and following my site. It has been a wonderful journey as I traveled the country and globe with you through this site and yours.

_____________

Joyce E. Johnson (2014)

Lost at Sea – Part 3, conclusion

This is a an old lobster trap on the porch of a visitors center in Digby, Nova Scotia where lobster and scallops fishing remains one of the biggest occupations there with people living on the coast.

 

 

The movement was slight, but unmistakable.

“There! See that?”

“Got it. Lower us down. It’s too rocky, unsteady to set down the copter.”

“It’s Ingram. He’s alive. Caught and tangled in his own traps under a downed tree. We’ll have to pull him free.”

They radioed the pilot. “Send down the hoist pulley.”

“It’s tied on. Now! Easy! Lift him out, carefully. I think he’s got broken ribs. Not sure what else.”

Good. Now, let’s get him secured in the basket.”

They radioed back. “Take him up. Gently!

“I’ll let them know we’ve found him.”

It was Christmas.

Carolers gathered around the old hall. “Joy to the world…” They sang. “and heaven and nature sing…”

Ingram pulled Henry up onto his lap. “Henry, this is for you.”

Henry ripped open his present, his blue eyes as big and bright as the lights on the tree.

The miniature clipper was just like the one he let go the day he sent it out to sea.

Wow! Look, mama! It’s my boat.”

__________________

Joyce E. Johnson (2014)

Footnotes:  All photos used for this 3 part story are ones I took while on a trip to Nova Scotia, Canada many years ago. You can find part 1 and 2 of Lost at Sea previously posted.

Christmases Past

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I am the little ‘angel’ on the left of the manger, in our church children’s program.

CHRISTMASES PAST

Trees that twinkled with shiny bright bulbs,

multi-colored lights and hanging tinsel.

Coloring books, crayons to pass the time

while waiting for Santa on Christmas Eve.

Baby dolls scented like soft new latex

dressed in pink flannel pajamas.

Red and green ribbon we made into bows

draped from presents placed under the tree.

Sweet confections and peppermint candies,

with peanuts, apples, oranges; all wrapped

given to children in brown paper bags.

Popcorn balls, fudge, and sugar cookies

my parents made for us each year.

Christmas cards filled with tidings and cheer

mailed and received from friends far and near.

New taffeta dresses, black patent leather shoes

for Sunday services before each Christmas.

Soft white angel costumes and halos

I wore in school pageants and nativity programs.

‘Silent Night,’ and traditional carols

we sang under a cold wintry sky

‘Peace and goodwill to all the world,’

Are things I remember from Christmases past.

___________________

Joyce E. Johnson © 2013

CHANGED

The below story is fiction. It is my submission for this week’s Friday Fictioneers 100 word story. The reference to ‘Scrooge’ is based on the old classic Christmas movie and book by Charles Dickens. It is a favorite of mine. I love the theme and story that is woven throughout the story, from the person he once was to the one he has now become. It is what Christmas is all about, accepting the One gift given to us all, the Savior to the world.

Comments and feedback are always welcomed.

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“I wish we could decorate, for Christmas. It’s so bare, and dull.”

“Our ‘Scrooge’ boss won’t allow it.”

‘Scrooge’ entered, leading a cadre of men carrying a big spruce tree, boxes filled with ornaments, garland, sweet treats and presents directing men where to put the tree, strands of lights, and decorations. Then he began passing out candy canes, pastry treats and presents to all.

His employees stared in disbelief at their boss as if he had taken leave of his self.

He smiled, nodding. “Yes. I’m a changed man. Forgive me, all. Bless you for being such faithful, patient employees.”

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