Priscilla's World | Celebrate the Christmas Season
Celebrate the Christmas Season

Parties, lights, candles, greens, and friends. All make this time of year special. Perhaps the most special is letters from friends, conversations with folks and unexpected surprises. This poem from our friend, John Thornburg, was a special surprise.


Infants don’t pretend.

They want to recreate

the warmth and comfort of the womb.

They cry to say, “I’m really cold.”

They coo to say, “Thank God I’m warm,”

or words to that effect.

When all grown up,

we put on a veneer

to hide the fear

that we cannot be loved as-is;

to cover up the righteousness

that we pretend to feel

when ‘someone’ doesn’t do

the things that make for peace.

Our words too often hide the truth.

We say, “I’ll do it,” then we don’t.

We say, “I love you,” then we won’t

confirm our love in what we do.

Pretending is a practiced art;

and practice makes imperfect.

There was a baby once

whose birth was trumpeted

from heaven’s porch.

But unlike us,

when he grew up

he did not hide the truth.

He loved us as we are,

and called us to abundant life.

In what he spoke,

in who he touched,

in where he walked,

in how he bled,

he showed us why a star

had pointed out the place and time

that truth came down

and donned our uniform.

No wonder angels sang of him.

And still they sing…

© 2010 John Thornburg/ A Ministry of Congregational Singing