“Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
The nativity story
We’ve all heard the familiar Christmas tale of the birth of Jesus. It is found in two of the New Testament Gospels, in Matthew chapters 1-2 and Luke chapters 1-2.
In short, Mary, who is a virgin and has not consummated her marriage, travels with her husband Joseph from Nazareth to Bethlehem.
Mary is pregnant and has been traveling on a donkey for several days, and now is about to give birth, but there is no room for them at the inn. They stay in a stable and their son Jesus is born in a manger.
This birth is celebrated a great company of the heavenly host, and an angel of the Lord appears to the shepherds who are keeping watch over their flocks at night.
The shepherds go to Bethlehem to view the newborn Messiah.
The imagery of the nativity scene
The so-called nativity scene is a display in the Christian tradition representing Jesus’ birth in the scene within the manger in which it occurred.
Traditionally, the scene contains Joseph, Mary, the baby Jesus, and other characters from the story of Jesus’ birth including shepherds, sheep, angels, a donkey, an ox, as well as the Magi (three wise men) and their camels.
Donkey, camel, and cow found roaming together
Just this week in Goddard, Kansas three animals were found roaming together reminiscent of the nativity scene. Goddard is located about 15 miles west of Wichita.
Authorities came upon a camel, a cow, and a donkey roaming along the Kansas road together. The Goddard Police Department asked help from the public in reuniting the animals with their owner.
Echoing the nativity scene, the police department described the animals as “three friends traveling together (toward a northern star).”
In another tongue-in-cheek remark, the police said that if they were unable to locate the owner, they would already be “halfway toward a live nativity this Christmas season.”
However, the Goddard Police Department did ultimately locate the owner of the animals who turned out to be an employee of the nearby Tanganyika Wildlife Park.
A sign from the Lord?
A well-known quote is that “the Lord works in mysterious ways.”
Maybe this is a reminder to us all to remember the true reason for the Christmas season.