<i>The alley is dark on this December day. It sure aint much different than any other day, but for some reason there’s lights everywhere outside this gloomy alleyway. The people seem so fake with forced smiles. I’ve heard theres some festival soon, but I’m not quite sure what makes it so special. Tomorrow the local church is holding a free dinner…It’ll be nice to eat some real food…</i>
<u>The next night, Christmas Eve</u>
The little 7 year old girl wanders into the seemingly large lobby, feeling extremely out of place. She sees a few other ‘streetwalkers’ hunched over plates of steaming food. Feeling overwhelmed, she starts to turn to leave. That’s when a stalky, and bubbly colored lady with stark grey hair comes strolling over. To the youngsters dismay, this lady speaks directly to the barefooted, scraggly looking girl.
<i>“Now where you think yur goin in this cold weather without no food in yur stomach or shoes on yur feet. Now don’t look so scared, I aint gonna eatcha. Come on over here and we’ll round u up some nice fixin’s this Christmas Eve.”</i>
The timid child sat with her hands in her lap starring at the plastic table in front of her. Within minutes the elderly woman returned with a plate heaped with foods the girl only dreamed about. Her eyes widened like saucers as she gave a questioning look to the woman setting the food before her.
<i>“Go on now”</i> she said, <i>“Im sure you havent eaten all day.”</i>
The newly delighted child dug in without reserve to the gravy covered turkey and pile of cranberry sauce. It was truly the best food she could remember eating during her time on the streets. About halfway through the plate of food, she realized her rudeness towards the kind woman. After a particularly large bite, she tried to speak.
<i>“Th-Th-Thank you,”</i> she stammered.
<i>“Do you know what today is girl?”</i> the old woman asked questioningly.
The child proceeded to count silently with her fingers.
<i>“Thursday?”</i> she asked, entirely serious about her answer.
The lady let out a soft chuckle and a sparkle lit up her eyes.
<i>“Well, it is Thursday, I’ll give ya that. But its also a special day. Its Christmas Eve, ya know.”</i>
The girl paused a moment, clearly puzzled by the older woman’s words. Shyly she spoke,
<i>“ What’s Christmas Eve?”
“Well, it’s the day before Christmas…But I suppose that isnt much help.” </i> A gentle smile spread over her face as she continued. <i>“Christmas is a huge celebration, one like no other. Friends and family gather together, and exchange gifts, eat lots of food, and sing carols!”
"Why would they do that?"</i> chimed the girl. The woman thought a moment, then spoke slowly.
<i>“Now why would they do that, I wonder… The truth is, Christmas is s’posed to be the celebration of Jesus’ birth. I guess all the other stuff is traditions. When ya think ‘bout it, all the stuff that characterizes Christmas don’t make no sense…”</i>
The child even more confused, questioned,<i> “Who is Jesus that everyone would celebrate his birth?”</i>
The elder, at first taken aback by her question, saw the girl’s need for Jesus, and began to explain the story of Jesus.
<i>“Jesus’ story starts back before the earth was made. Ya see, God is really three in one. I know, confusing. It’s one of them things ‘bout God you never quite get. Anywho, The ‘Godhead, three in one’ is made up of the Holy Spirit, the Father, and the Son, Jesus. Now God made the whole universe and everything in it, down to the very details of you an’ me. In the beginning, man was sinless, we hadn’t done nothin wrong, and we walked with God in the Garden. But as ya know, man kind can be pretty messed up, and so the first humans sinned, seperatin’ us from God. But despite our many faults, God still loved us. So for quite a while, people sacrificed animals to atone, or make up for, their sins. But God knew that wouldn’t be enough. So God the Father sent the Son into the world. His only Son, Jesus, was born into this world as a little baby boy. And he lived a sinless life, which made him the ‘perfect sacrifice’. When Jesus was ‘bout 32, He was taken by some bad people, and they hung him on a cross ta die. Ya see, Jesus was preachin’ ‘bout God, and he did amazin’ things, showin people that he was the Son of God. But high up people o’ dat time, they didn’t like that one bit. But God had this all in His plan. He knew Jesus had to be killed, ta be a sacrifice, for you and me. After Jesus’ death on da cross, He rose from the dead. Then he spent 40 days on dis earth with his disciples b’fore he rose up inta Heaven ta be with The Father. But in His stead, He sent da Holy Spirit down here to live within anyone who asks Jesus into their hearts. And its because of all dis in God’s mighty plan, that you and me can go ta Heaven when we die.”
“But dat seems so cruel! And what’s so special ‘bout heaven no how? And I aint never asked Jesus to be a sacrifice for me!”</i> cried out the little girl, tears filling her eyes.
The old lady looked lovingly at the child. <i>“Well ya see, Jesus don’t give us what we want, but what we need. And Jesus chose death, so we could live with Him and da Father. Little girl, heaven is beyond da best place you could ever imagine. It’s gonna be amazin’, wonderful…perfect. Dat’s what heaven is. But ya see though, if ya don’t go ta heaven, when you die, ya go ta hell. Now hell is a nasty place where ya don’t never wanna be. It’s eternal seperation from God. But God didn’t want no one ta go ta hell, so dat’s why Jesus had ta die. All you gotta do is accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, and he changes you lik’ you cant believe!”</i>
The night went on with tearful conversation, and eventually the child praying a prayer of salvation. The elderly woman was named Joyce, and she had lost her husband to cancer, and both of her children to war. She lived in a broken down trailer in an empty lot, all by herself, but anyone who knew Joyce could tell you that there was no one kinder or more helpful than her. Christmas time came, and she’d be the first in a soup kitchen smiling ear to ear, singin songs about baby Jesus, her savior. She never received a Christmas present after her husbands passing, but each Christmas, she gave the present of Jesus to at least one person. May 24th, 2003, Joyce passed away due to liver failure, and at her funeral could be seen a little girl in ragged clothes, with a small wooden cross hanging around her neck and tattered bible clutched between bony fingers.
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Erm.. i enjoy writing poems and ... yeah so... this is just random things.