For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And, this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. Luke 2:11 – 12
Tomorrow we celebrate the birth of our Savior. Lying in a manger, in a stable, the earthly life of Jesus Christ began in such a humble way. This beginning came to mind as I photographed a boy standing near his Christmas tree outside his home in the small village of San Antonio de Guerra in the Dominican Republic.
Approaching the house, a woman stuck her head out the door. I pointed to my camera and then the tree. The woman smiled and beckoned me to come forward. She ducked back inside the house and brought her young son out onto the porch. She put him down, letting him stand near the tree. She pointed at him and then my camera. Happily, I took pictures of both.
There were lights on the tree, but the small house had no working electricity. Even though the home bore bright Caribbean colors, the setting could only be described as humble. There would be no way to get the photograph just taken to the young woman. All I could do is let her look at her son standing near the Christmas tree on the back of my digital camera. She stared at the image in wonder, then looked to me smiling brightly.
During my week in the Dominican Republic, I saw many smiles from people in places where a smile would seem impossible to muster. Yet, there were always smiles, smile after smile of peace and happiness even in what can only be called abject poverty.
Under that Christmas tree, a small nativity scene served as a reminder that Christ came to save all who believe. What we have is meaningless compared to what came from that simple beginning in a manger, our salvation. Let that bring a smile to your face now and for all eternity.
Joy to the world! the Lord is come;
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare him room.