I've never participated in this sort of school project but most any TV show involving a school certainly has - being tasked with caring for a "baby." Usually part of a health class and always a source of humor as the robotic baby won't stop crying or the potato baby loses an appendage.
The purpose of the assignment is generally to teach a young teen that a baby is a serious responsibility and that you can't just treat it like a toy. You can't just take for granted that you can turn it off or leave it in a drawer or whatever.
Kind of like Jesus.
Bear with me here.
It's that time of year that we start hearing all kinds of shouts of "Keep Christ in Christmas!"
I'm not necessarily one of those type of folks. For me, Christmas is a religious holiday and it is the celebration of the birth of Christ. No, I don't believe that Jesus was literally born on December 25. Yes, I do believe that Christmas has roots that go further back than the noted life of Christ himself.
I also believe that there isn't anything anyone can do that will take Christ *out* of my Christmas. If that's how I choose to celebrate, that is how I will celebrate. I don't give any government or group or person or store or advertisement enough power to take Jesus away from me or from my holiday.
I saw this on Facebook today:
And I think it's an important message. We can yell and scream about "our" holiday being commercialized... or we can live like Christ, set the example, seek to be more like the man we study and our example will scream louder than our angry sentiments about a holiday.
Want to really keep Christ in Christmas? Want to really and truly understand the arrival of a King, a Saviour, a Warrior in the form of a simple and innocent and vulnerable baby?
Wear Jesus this Christmas.
Get a baby doll. Get a sling or a baby carrier. Name that doll Jesus. Carry it with you everywhere you go. Talk to the baby Jesus in your arms. Keep your doll close to you to protect him and love him and care for him. Be aware of this tiny life in your arms when you yell at your kids or your spouse, when you raise your hand to spank the dog. Look at his tiny face when you gossip to your friend over coffee, when you talk behind someone's back. Hold his small hand when you curse someone in traffic... when you turn a blind eye to the homeless man on the corner.
Do you live your life every day as if you were carrying Jesus in your arms? Do you live your life each day as though Christ is guiding your heart? Or do you set the doll aside... flip the switch to off for a break... tuck the doll in a drawer so you don't look uncool around your friends?
Wear Jesus this Christmas. Hold him in your arms. Wear him in a sling. Keep him loved and warm and protected.
Be aware of Jesus in your arms when you hug a child or console someone who is hurting. Look at his sweet face before you speak any words about another person. Hold his hand when you pray for others, when you ask for forgiveness.
The best way to "keep Christ in Christmas?"
Keep Christ in YOU.