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(Written For My Grandchildren)

"Tell us a story!"

The grandchildren said,

As I kissed all their cheeks,

And tucked them in bed.

"Tell us the story of Christmas, you know,

About the little choir boy lost in the snow."

"You mean my favorite one as a child,

The one with the manger where the gifts were all piled?"

"Yes, Grandma, yes!" all four cried aloud,

They loved that old story and I was so proud.

They remembered it all, and said it with me,

As we whispered and giggled and laughed with great glee.

"Write a new story, one just for us!"

They begged and they pleaded and made quite a fuss.

"I give in!" I laughed,"I'll start it tonight,

Now, go right to sleep, I'll turn out the light."

I worked until midnight--my eyes were all red.

Then I put down my pen and hurried to bed.

I pulled all my covers up nice and tight,

Then dreamed of my story throughout the short night.

Travis and Kersee, Jalen, and Marlie,

Were dreaming, too, of the story you see.

Soon it was daylight and the children, in glory,

Jumped up on my bed and cried, "Where is our story!"

"I did write a story", I said, "though it's old--

I know you have heard it, many time's it's been told.

The story is one of the oldest on earth

It's about the great miracle of baby Jesus' birth . . . 



Once upon a time long, long ago there was a kind old man who had many animals. The old man was blind and he lived in a stable with his animals. It was a very small stable, but it was warm and had lots and lots of soft, sweet-smelling hay piled around for the animals to lie on. All the animals were happy living with the old man.

One night, the animals couldn't sleep. They walked around and around, moo-ing and baa-ing and bleating. Finally the old man woke up. "Why are you all awake?" he asked. The old man couldn't see what was keeping them up, but there was a brilliant light shining through the cracks of the barn's old wooden walls. It was even brighter than it was when the sun shined in the daytime.

Suddenly, there was a knock on the barn door. "Is anyone there?" A man called. "Please, let us come in."

"Yes, " called the old man. "Come in! Come in and join my family." He gestured toward the animals milling around the barn.

"I am Joseph, and this is my wife, Mary. We have been walking for many days looking for a place to rest and for my wife to give birth. No one will let us stay. The man at the inn said you may have room for us."

"Of course!  You are welcome here! I am just an old man without my sight and we do not have much, but we will share what we have with you. Stay here as long as you like. The animals will keep you warm."

The animals tried to go to sleep, but the light was just too bright. They watched as the newcomers settled themselves in a far corner of the barn.

The soft noise of the animals was comforting to Mary and Joseph as they waited for the baby to be born.


Far, far away from the little stable, in the desert and in the mountains, the brilliant light shone over everything. It was coming from a single star in the dark sky. The ones that saw the star knew it was something more important than had ever been before, and soon they started walking towards the star, in the direction of the East.

Shepherds came with their flocks of sheep. Wise men came carrying special presents and Kings from all the lands came, riding camels and wearing their crowns of gold and gems. Everyone followed the brilliant star until they reached the little stable. The bright starlight shone directly over the barn causing it look as if it were made of gold. 

They threw open the doors of the little barn and an even more brilliant light from within blinded them momentarily. When their eyes adjusted to the light, they peeked inside and saw that the light was falling directly on a small baby, lying on straw in a manger. The manger was surrounded by animals, quietly watching over the baby. A young couple were kneeling next to the manger, and a smiling old man who could once again see, was gazing lovingly into the baby's sweet face.

The old man turned toward the noise of the crowd at the barn door and bid them to come in.   He saw the shepherds with their sheep and the wise men carrying great gifts and the kings and all their jewels and finery. He could see everything around him! He looked at his beloved animals and then again at the sweet little baby in the manger, and the old man knew a great miracle was happening.

Doreen Bradley Satter 2010