Jennifer Vibral is the artisan of the nativity set that adorns Mike and her home.
Jennifer writes, “The nativity set was made of ceramic about twenty years ago when both our son and our daughter were at Florida State University. Over the years I made each family member a nativity set that was meaningful to them when they moved away from home. Each one was different in size, style, color and in techniques.
This nativity set is now my favorite as it has so much that is representative of our family. I have always displayed it in the living room, as originally, there was a much older nativity in the family room. Now I think that the living and dining room is where this nativity naturally belongs. As I pass through the living room and the dining room to get anywhere in the house, and each time, I see the nativity. It never ceases to touch my heart.
I do not keep it up all year, but I look with anticipation to the day before Thanksgiving, when we begin decorating for Christmas. The placement is much the same each year. I seem to alternate the side from which the shepherds and wise men enter. Nothing I have shared thus far is unique, but everything about it seems unique. I confess, since childhood, I have loved black and white cows, and we have a black and white mid-western spotted cow. I have checked out nativities everywhere and never seen another.
I mentioned earlier the nativity had meaning for many in our family. All the shepherds seeking Jesus are from Florida State, wearing garnet and gold, and even their donkey’s blanket is garnet and gold. The wise men are clothed in complementary and popular colors from twenty years ago: royal blue, teal, maroon and mauve.
The stable is one I saw in a catalogue a few years ago and thought it would be perfect for the nativity family for shelter. Each time I pass by the nativity I smile to myself, not only because I am reminded of the birth of the Christ Child and God’s gift of salvation, but of the little family stories which are included in this nativity.
Scripture: I Timothy 6:18-19
Thought for the Day: What talents do I have that I could share with others?
Prayer: Loving Father, we thank You for giving us abilities, gifts, skills and talents and for giving us generous hearts to share them with others. In celebration of Christ’s birth, help us to present our gifts to Him by giving to others. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.