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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

An Invitation...

Yesterday the kids and I went to the library. We have made a habit of looking through the books that the library is selling. I picked up this book, bought it, read it this morning, and was surprised by an invitation. The book is: Baboushka and the Three Kings by Ruth Robbins. It is a small, children's book, so I am going to quote some of it...

"Long ago and far away, on a winter's evening, the wind blew hard and cold around a small hut. Inside the hut Baboushka was sweeping and scrubbing, and feeding wood to the stove. The old woman took pride in the clean comfort of her meager home. The swirling snow drifted and deepened outside. Baboushka's hut felt snug around her; her warm stove was the center of a cold world.

As day turned into night, a trumpet call sounded on the wind. A train of travelers was approaching. Leading the procession was a magnificent sleigh drawn by three white horses. In the sleigh rode three men, splendid figures, wearing jeweled crowns and cloaks of crimson and ermine. Men on horseback followed the sleigh and behind them trudged men on foot.

The procession stopped at the door of Baboushka's hut. Baboushka heard a knock. When she lifted the latch, the three strangers stood in the doorway. The poor woman looked in wonder at their elegant dress, their frosted beards, their kind eyes. What manner of men were these?

In answer to her thought, one of the three smiled and said, 'We have been following a bright star to a place where a Babe is born. Now we have lost our way in the snow. Come with us, Baboushka. Help us to find the Child, to offer Him gifts, and to rejoice in His birth.'

Baboushak shivered in the cold. She hugged a shawl tightly around her thin shoulders. 'Good sirs, come in and warm yourselves by the stove. I've not yet finished my day's work. And I shudder to go out on such a cruel night. Morning is wiser than evening. Rest here this night and I will go with you in the dawn.'

'There is not time to linger, Baboushka,' answered the stangers. 'If you cannot come with us now, we must continue our journey.'

They turned and disappeared into the storm.

The rest of the book finds Baboushka spending the rest of her life (to this day.. it is a fairytale you know) journeying... trying to find the king's path and the Child.

It made me stop and think.

Is there an invitation being quietly asked of me, today? And I am too content with a warm house and peaceful surroundings to venture out into the cold and storm to follow? Am I holding onto those things too tightly?

I have seen a sojourner, recently. I have seen my pastor and friend, Jan, venture out of the warm community of Open Door, to follow the journey to seek the Child. She has gone into the storm.

Lord. Keep me awake. Help me to live, enjoying your gifts and blessings, but ready to leave at a moment's notice. Keep me from taking your invitation lightly. Help me to be sensitive and responsive to Your Will.

Lord I ask for your traveling mercies to be on all who are journeying today.


At 8:04 PM, Blogger sleeping with bread said...

Jamie . . . this is beautiful!!!

At 6:37 AM, Blogger julie said...

the words for children are so wise at times... i love the depth we can so often find within these stories.


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