If you’re in the Nashville area, please join us for tonight’s Christmas Eve service at 6 p.m. In the glow of candlelight, we’ll be singing carols, observing the Lord’s supper, sharing Luke 2, and we’ll have an original short story I’ve written for the occasion, entitld “Ollie.” Here’s how it begins:
I am going to tell you a story just as my father told it to me, for I can still remember it almost word for word as he related it on Christmas Eve of 1963. We had finished dinner, opened some presents, and put on our pajamas. Just before bedtime, as the last log was burning in the fireplace, I saw my dad walk over to the mantel, take down the antique snow globe with its small nativity scene, and turn the crank on the bottom. The little music box played “Silent Night” as the snow swirled around Joseph, Mary, and the baby in the manger. My dad was lost in thought until the music ceased, then he turned and saw me watching him. I guess I looked at him quizzically, because he went on to recite a little poem I’d never heard before, as though he were explaining something to me.
Silent, holy, calm, and bright,
Jesus came to pierce the night,
Jesus came to make things right,
Silent, holy, calm and bright,
I didn’t know what to make of it, so I did what most twelve-year-old fellows would do. I asked questions. “What do’ya mean, dad? Where’d you get that old globe, anyhow? Where’d it come from?” Well, he sat right down in the floor, there in front of the fireplace with the snow globe resting in his lap, and he motioned for me. I sat down beside him and he turned the thing over and showed me what was stamped on the bottom: Made is Germany, 1939. Then he put his arm around me and this is what he said….