The Manger in My Heart

by Fr Nathan Miller LC | Source:

“Goodie, Goodie!” cried thechildren when we told them “two more weeks”

They’d been faithful doing homework,did their chores with fewer squeaks

“Will he really bring us candy?” “Can it reallybe so near?”

Christmas barely seemed withinour grasp—and then was gone—last year

After Christmas fascinationssimmered down and died away

Once the New Year’s resolutionsturned to ashes—wispy grey

Broken gifts and bits of bulbsthat had been crushed beneath the couch

—Hugging trimmings from the pine-tree—triggeredmorning’s barefoot “ouch!”

“What remained? What is different now that Christmas came and went?”

—I stood staring through asnowstorm while I pondered what we’d spent—

“Preparations, celebrations—mustit always come and go?”

—Then the springtime came uponus, sprouting flowers, melting snow


Little children weren’tgleeful, dismal parents packed with speed

This concerned the mighty rulers;was a journey forced for greed

Then in Bethlehem a couple found a cave within thehills

And a crying Jewish infant cameto life with zero frills

Past the stable’s destitution,Joe and Mary—homeward bound—

Carried just a helpless baby—nota scepter, not a crown

Sure, they’d met some ruggedshepherds, and a star above did shine

But the world was obliviousthis peasant was divine

What remained? What was different now that Christmas came and passed?

Did it matter it was simple? Itwas humble? Didn’t last?

Like it mattered God was godly!Oh, it mattered God was wee!

For he took upon our weakness—forhe joined humanity!


“Goodie, goodie” cry thechildren once again as Christmas nears

There’ll be candy, gifts andstockings, and again the Christmas “cheers!”

But the secret of unending joy which sets this year apart

Is—amid this Happy Holiday—themanger in my heart. 

Fr. Nathan is editor of

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