I am usually a stickler on no-Christmas-stuff-until-Thanksgiving-is-done rule. I want to experience one holiday at a time -- mixing pilgrims with Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree is just too much for me!
But, this year, I caved.
In November, I opened up my mailbox to find a new VeggieTales DVD -- a Christmas Veggie Tales movie, "The Little Drummer Boy." I couldn't tell my kids to wait several weeks before we watched it, right? Right?! We had to sit down immediately and see what Bob and Larry were up to!
And I'm so glad we did.
It's the story of Aaron, the little drummer boy. He has some very talented dancing pets who love cutting a rug when Aaron plays his drum. But in the middle of his happiness, his home is burned down, and his parents are taken by the Roman soldiers. Seriously! It was actually kind of scary!
Aaron sets out alone with his dancing pets and vows to never trust or love another person again. He finally hooks up with some traveling performing Veggies and meets the Three Wise Men. In their adventures, his favorite lamb, Baa-Baa, is hurt. While Aaron is seething on the inside from the injustice of his life, one of the Wise Men point him to baby Jesus.
Aaron, recognizing the seriousness of this baby's birth, gives the only gift he can -- a song. He plays his drum for Jesus, and when he does, his heart is opened, healed, and set free. Just then, he is reunited with his parents, and they all rejoice that God has drawn them back together.
This movie wasn't just the retelling of a classic Christmas tale. It's really a picture of ourselves.
Like Aaron, we were lost in our sin and selfishness. But Jesus loved us so much that He came to earth as a baby, to live and ultimately die for us! When we open up and give our small gifts to Him, He comes in and does a miracle in our hearts and lives.
Amanda's son, Asa, age 3, plays with some new VeggieTales toys. Pah-rum-pum-pum-pum.
What small gifts can we give? Jesus tells us Himself, "For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me...Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me." —Matthew 25:35-40 (NIV)
When we give to those in need this Christmas, we are really giving to Jesus. And just like the Little Drummer Boy, our gift may be small and seemingly insignificant. But it is a gift given to Jesus in love. Not only will He use it to bless those who receive, He will turn around and do miracles for the giver, too!
This Christmas, grab the The Little Drummer Boy DVD, some popcorn, and your kids. Sit on the couch, watch the movie, and then talk about the life change that took place after a small gift was given. You might even grab the World Vision Gift Catalog and let your children pick out their own small gift to give.
And then, you'd better find a toy drum to play with, because if your kids are like mine, they won't stop singing "pah-rum-pum-pum-pum" for the next two weeks!
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Amanda White is a stay-at-home mom of two who blogs at OhAmanda.com and Impress Your Kids and is the author of Truth in the Tinsel. In her former life, Amanda was a children’s pastor -- overseeing, organizing, and developing ministry for kids in nursery through middle school -- but now that she is a mom, her “skills” are used up on her kids!
This Christmas, join World Vision and VeggieTales in the retelling of this classic Christmas story. Teach your kids about the joy of giving, and help change lives!
For more Christmas gift ideas that will help change lives: Holiday Gift Guide -- 30 meaningful gifts under $30.