Nativity Stories

I read this book recently and couldn’t wait to tell you about it, so I wrote a review and posted it at Wineskins. Part of my urgency was to put it up before Christmas, because our interest in Mary is usually around Christmas, which is part of what Scot McKnight, who I consider one of the top five theologian/writers to watch and listen to today, is trying to move us away from. Mary is so much more than a “Christmas Character” but a courageous and prophetic disciple who not only says “May it be” but also “do what he tells you” and hears and believes the words of Gabriel when he says, “Nothing is impossible with God,” even the rise of a peasant boy who will cause the rising and falling of many, and one who will be pierced by the sword to her heart and soul.

The Real Mary

I also posted a review of The Nativity Story, more than what I posted here a few days ago, on Wineskins.

Review of The Nativity Story

I’m not a “real” movie reviewer, so here’s some more legit reviews . . . of course it’s all freestyle stuff and sometime “real” reviewers are a little more highbrow and may not relate to everyperson watchers. If you read my movie reviews, that’s what you’ll get is just a guy in a movie seat telling you what he saw, but you’ll sometimes miss some of the Hollywood insider stuff I’m clueless about.

Rotten Tomatoes reviews of The Nativity Story

Joseph, stepfather of the Lord

I asked at a Christmas party last night for those gathered to tell one part of the Christmas story that stood out in their hearings so far this Advent. One person said she was touched by the fact that Jesus was part of a step family.

Here is a little-read line from the beginning of Luke’s version of the genealogy of Jesus:

“He was the son, so it was thought, of Joseph” (Luke 3:23b)

What if you were Mary?

Keisha Castle-Hughes stars as “Mary” in New Line Cinema’s release of Catherine Hardwicke’s drama, The Nativity Story.I asked high school students last week to visualize Mary, depicted so well in The Nativity Story, conflicted, wondering how anyone would believe her story about the Holy Spirit conceiving in her a child.

When you wonder how this teenaged Jewish girl might have felt to be the mother of the Messiah, ask teenagers how they might feel . . .

Students wrote their feelings on cards and here are a few things they wrote, compiled in one paragraph:

I would be confused but happy in a way, I am overwhelmed, humbled, scared but excited, awed, honored, scared spitless, loved, sacred, angry, unbelievable, amazed, WOW! then I would faint, wouldn’t know what to think, doubtful, afraid, honored God chose me, a spiritual peace and logical fear and she says to herself, “this is what I was made for,” curious, mysterious, proud, worried, joyful, anxious, unready for responsibilities to come, WOW, me Lord? You want me to do this for you!?

Photo: Keisha Castle-Hughes stars as “Mary” in New Line Cinema’s release of Catherine Hardwicke’s drama, The Nativity Story. Photo Credit: ©2006 Jaimie Trueblood/New Line Productions