Happy Birthday Jesus by Lacy Hall
Today is the eighth day in the series of holiday stories, poems and songs created by members of the Trinity Writers’ Workshop. These submissions were included in the TWW Christmas Book which was given to children and their families during the Christmas at the Stockyards event in Fort Worth, Texas on December 3, 2011. The eighth of these writers is Lacy Hall.
Happy Birthday Jesus!
by Lacy Hall
Christmas was always a time of great excitement and anticipation in our family. It meant decorating the tree, seeing family we hadn’t seen in a long time, and lots of good food and fun. We always went to the Christmas Eve candlelight service at our church, and drove all around town afterwards looking at nativity scenes and twinkling Christmas lights. It was always a wonderful time but one year my mother suggested doing something extra special. “Christmas is all about celebrating the birth of Jesus, so let’s have a Happy Birthday Jesus party!” she said. We all loved the idea, so we set about to plan a party to remember the birth of baby Jesus, the greatest gift of all.
We decided we would have the party on Christmas Eve, so we invited all our friends and family to come over after the candlelight service. During the week leading up to the festivities, we decorated the house with bright green garlands and gold tinsel and made luminaries for the yard out of paper bags and candles. I don’t know which was more fun..the party itself or all the excitement getting ready for it.
Finally, Christmas Eve was upon us, and that day was a whirlwind of preparation of food and putting the final touches on the decorations. My mother made a big chocolate cake and wrote “Happy Birthday Jesus” in icing on the top of it. There were finger sandwiches, sausage balls, all kinds of crackers and dips, and my grandmother’s homemade peanut brittle and chocolate fudge. We got ready and went to the candlelight service where we watched a live nativity and listened to the hand bell choir play Christmas carols. My favorite part was at the end of the service. The preacher talked about how the world is in darkness without the love of Jesus, but how His light can be shared from one person to the next until all of us have it inside our hearts. He demonstrated this by lighting a candle and then the next person’s candle with his flame. We all did this one by one until each person’s flame was burning brightly. Then all the lights in the sanctuary were turned off and we stood there in the glow of all those candles. It was very quiet and the flickering of the candlelight on our faces reflected the joy that we all felt. Then we sang Silent Night with no instruments playing and when that was finished, we left and did not blow out the candles until we were outside. Of course, we had to rush home to be there in time to greet our guests.
The house was filled with the sounds of laughter and holiday cheer. We kids recited a story about the birth of Jesus titled, “The Baby Born in a Stable.” Then we lit the candles on the birthday cake and everyone sang “Happy Birthday” to Jesus, and all the candles were blown out. We ate and sang carols and had a marvelous time with all of our friends from church and our family who made it in from out of town. Everyone went on and on about how much fun they had and what a marvelous idea it was to throw a birthday party for Jesus. My mother and father and I decided right then we wanted to make it a yearly tradition and so we did. Over the years, many splendid Happy Birthday Jesus parties were thrown, each unique and some quite adventurous. Some years, the children attending would dress up in costume and act out the “Baby Born in a Stable” story and there was the year I got sick from eating too much fudge. At one memorable party, the wind starting blowing up a gale and set the luminaries in the yard on fire and we had to keep running outside to put them out. We laugh about that one now. I have a lot of precious memories about all those parties, but the thing I cherish most is that our family’s tradition played a part in bringing a lot of people together over the years to share in the joy of Christmas and celebrate the birth of the One who came to earth and was born as a baby so we could all know His love and grace
Don’t forget that beginning January 2, 2012, I am offering a two month class in character development called Simply Creating Fictional Characters.
The class will include techniques in buiding believable, interesting three-dimensional characters. I will also assist and encourage students to interact with each other through twitter, facebook and their blogs.
I think it will be a great way to start the new year.
To find out more about the classes go to http://www.sharonkowen.com click on the tab classes and creative writing classes.
Looking forward to seeing your there
Posted on December 16, 2011, in Trinity Writers Workshop, Writers, Writers Groups, Writing and tagged creative writing, lacy hall, online creative writing classes, sharon k owen, simply creating fictional characters class, Thicker Than Water (Brands Crossing Series, trinity writers' workshop, writing groups fort worth and dallas texas. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.