Christmas: The dawn of love come down

by Christine Sine
Christmas tree lights

by Joy Lenton

It’s dawn on Christmas Day. A sense of anticipation builds. Children are already fumbling for their lumpy, weighty stockings and emitting excited squeals before hurrying to show their sleep-deprived parents what Santa has brought them.

Come with me to a quiet, sleepy city street. Here we find a woman who rarely surfaces early or feels remotely half-awake until coffee time or later, slowly and gently being nudged out of slumber.

She doesn’t have a child disturbing her rest, instead there’s a thrill of hope racing through her veins. A feeling of awe stirs her to rouse and remember Christmas Day has dawned. A sudden splurge of energy propels her toward the bedroom window. 

Here she spots the muted glow of street lights still visible behind the curtains. Yet something invites her to draw them back a notch and look beyond the environs of her home, the street corner, houses and trees. This is what she sees…


She wakes with the dawn,
which is unusual
because her weary body rarely

comes alive before coffee time,
at least, but now she is drawn
to part the curtains on the day,

where she witnesses
a golden-ridged, rippled cloud
of applause echoing through the sky

as if to celebrate
this Christmas Day, this wondrous
event when Christ arrives.

It seems as if the heavens
are joining earth
in exultation, rejoicing 

in their King
being revealed to mortal eyes.
And in this glorious
display it feels like angels

are singing again,
unheard by human ears, and yet
they leave vestiges

of royal love and joy threading
like wafts of shining cotton wool
lining the acreage of sky.

Her heart lifts, too,
as she admires
the spectacle of glory clouds

and ponders on
how marvellous the first Christmas
must have been 

to its small audience,
unseen hosts
and awed participants,
while heaven touched earth

irrefutably, through a baby’s
breath, a tiny heartbeat
that still resounds—now softly
bound within her own.

© joylenton

dawn on Christmas morning clouds sky

Photo by Joy Lenton

“The Word became
a human being
    and lived here with us.
We saw his true glory,
the glory of the only Son
    of the Father.
From him the complete gifts
of undeserved grace and truth
    have come down to us.”
John 1:14 CEV


A Christmas Day prayer

Dear Lord Jesus, 

Today we celebrate Your birth, how You came and dwelt among us here on earth. Although we might be overfamiliar with the biblical narrative, help us retain a sense of awe at the wonder of it all as we remember how You inhabited our humanity. 

May our hearts reignite with the anticipation, hope, expectation, awe and joy of a child on Christmas morning, one who can’t wait to unwrap the wonderful gifts You bring us. 

Help us to notice the majestic and the marvellous wrapped up in the mundane. As we go about our humdrum, ordinary days, may they be filled with a deep-seated awareness of Your gifts of joy and peace and saturated with Your grace.

May we learn to rejoice, even in the challenging and hard, because You came down to earth and You love us so much. You are with us through the good times and the bad. You live in our hearts by faith, a new life birthing made possible because of your own.


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