My husband has a special fondness for nativities and when we married, his mother gave us the nativity he’d grown up loving. It already had some wear and tear on it and if the animals could talk, I’m sure they would have some stories to tell me about my husband’s childhood Christmases. Over the years, we’ve collected many more nativities. One is made of acrylic and is indestructible. It lives under the Christmas tree and is perfect for children to arrange and rearrange. One is porcelain and always lives up high, out of the reach of tiny hands.
But my favorite nativity is the one that came broken.
I saw it in a store one day many years ago and it caught my eye because the donkey’s ear was broken. Whoever had bumped the display, thus causing the donkey’s injury, had not reported the incident to the store manager. There on the glass shelf sat the nativity with the donkey’s ear an inch away from his body. I knew immediately that I had to have it so I bought it—Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, the donkey and his ear—and took it home where I carefully glued the donkey back together.
This small, simple nativity is my favorite because it represents the true meaning of Christmas: Jesus came for us in all of our brokenness. To the world we may look like we have all of our pieces together, but in reality, we’re all broken. I’m so grateful that Jesus came to earth for you and for me so that in Him we can be made whole.
Merry Christmas to all my broken friends.