From the cradle to the cross!
When the time had arrived, on the appointed day,
Mary gave birth to Jesus, and laid Him on the hay.
Not of fine linen or silk, His swaddling clothes,
Had to be born in a manger as the inn was filled and closed.
What was Mary thinking as she drew Him to her breast;
‘How could I have been chosen to be so very blessed?’
Joseph stood nearby, sheltering them from the cool winter air;
As he pondered the scene and observed the baby lying there.
He was not His true father, that Joseph knew for sure;
Deeply troubled by all the ridicule they have had to endure.
‘Mary, did you know’, they asked, as she placed Him on His bed;
‘Yes’, she replied, ‘all has come true, everything the Holy Angel said’.
Bethlehem, you’d been chosen, did you even have a clue;
That the Savior, Immanuel, God’s only Son, would be born in you?
The prophets had foretold, but why you, such a little town?
All the shepherds are gazing as they start to gather round.
Drawn to this holy spot, encouraged by the heavenly host;
What was so special that angels sang, and a star seemed so close?
Its brightness drew distant wise men and their gift-laden caravan;
To the place destined to be the first home of the Son of Man.
The cattle stood lowing, along with the sheep from the hills nearby;
Their heads turn toward the cradle as the baby begins to cry.
There was so much to ponder by all who had gathered to see
What God had surely done; now no longer a mystery.
A long, hard trip lay ahead, to Egypt they would go;
The first of which that would lead to Jerusalem, little did they know.
From the sanctuary of a cool, dark cave to cruel Golgotha’s hill;
A scene quite different, but He knew it was His Father’s will.
There was no angelic singing-only crowds stirred into an angry mob;
Mary and the other women, with the disciples, begin to sob.
She was remembering how this had all begun, so innocent and serene;
Now to see Him being tortured; what could this really mean?
Thirty-three years here with them, showing compassion and love;
To die for our sins, not His, must be why He left His home above.
The road from Bethlehem led to many places, all had been foretold;
Passed on from generation to generation, the story never gets old.
Today we know the full truth, which we must accept by faith;
God’s grace and mercy are evident, no matter what the place.
See, it is for us that Mary and her family had to suffer loss;
Both destined to happen; the joy at the cradle and the sorrow at the cross.
To accept one without the other would be nothing less than heresy;
We glory in the cross at Easter; but it is Christmas, let us rejoice in the Nativity!
From the archives of poems by Bill C. Dotson