Dear friends and family,
This is our very first Christmas letter, and I know that you’ll get it late. Which is unfortunate, but we’ve been busy. You see, we have a newborn! I know, it came as a surprise to me, too! But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
Every Christmas letter should contain something about the year gone by. I just made that up, but it seems appropriate.
This spring, Mary, my then-fiancé, informed me that she was pregnant. I won’t lie, it came as a shock. I felt betrayed and angry! It seemed so out of character, Mary has never been anything but kind and loyal to me. I was torn between wanting to leave her and needing to protect her. But an angel came to see me, telling me that the son of God was growing in Mary’s womb. Everything shifted. I realized that I had been given the great honor of fostering the Hope of the world. It just never occurred to me that it involved changing diapers.
The decree from Caesar Augustus sent us straight back to Bethlehem for the census. After all, I am a descendant of king David. We are worshippers. Warriors. Messiah shall come from our bloodline. We knew it, and yet, none of us saw this coming.
I took a lot of heat for staying with Mary. All the men in my family murmured cuckold whenever they passed me, while the women made sure to share all their horrific birth stories. I didn’t listen. After all, this was no ordinary birth. We were due to receive the anointed. Surely, nothing could go wrong. Heaven would look out for him, right?
He said there was no room left. The inn manager must have seen the look of despair on my face, because he took pity on us and gave us access to the manger. “At least it’s warm,” he said. The animals shared their heat as well as their stench. I spent the entire time cleaning while Mary was in labor. She hardly noticed. My wife was wrapped up in a dimension of her own where time and livestock played no part. I stood in awe as I watched Heaven being born in a manger. There was a dreadful moment of absolute silence before he cried. We all did. I sobbed. Real men do, you know.
There’s hope. Incarnated Hope. His name is Immanuel.
This has been an extraordinary year. I can’t imagine my life getting any weirder than this. Then again, you never know. There’s something special about this kid.
I hope you are doing well. Mary sends her love, too.
All the best,