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Sunday, December 10, 2017

The little red wagon

Cover of "Little Red Wagon: Miracle Renewed" by Walter Farquharson

Source unknown (submitted by Joyce Sasse) - In a little Mexican town there was a simple little church where the true spirit of Christmas still lived. It was the custom there, on Christmas Eve, to put many candles on the altar and, close by, little figures of the Nativity Scene.

There was the manger in the stable, and Mary and Joseph, the Baby Jesus lying in the straw, and the animals in their stalls. Overhead was the one bright star which guided the Wise Men to Bethlehem.

Early on Christmas morning the pastor of the church went to see that all the little figures were in place for the first service. He was horrified to see that the tiny figure of the Baby Jesus was gone. The pastor looked everywhere but he could not find the Baby Jesus.

As the pastor left the church he was almost run over by a little boy racing a red wagon along the sidewalk.

It was Pedro, the baker’s son. The pastor smiled and started to speak to the boy when suddenly, he noticed, in the red wagon, the missing figure of the Christ Child.

“Pedro!” he cried, “it was you! You took the Baby Jesus. Why did you do it?”

Pedro hung his head and was silent. The pastor scolded and questioned. Still Pedro would not explain. He just hung his head and dug the toe of one scuffed shoe into the side of the other.

“It – it was like this,” Pedro finally blurted out. “I – I wanted a red wagon for Christmas, and I prayed. I asked Jesus to let me have a red wagon. And – and I promised Him that if I got one, I’d give him a ride in it. It’s his birthday you know.”

The good pastor knelt down and looked carefully into the boy’s face. There were tears in the pastor’s eyes.

“I am sorry I scolded, Pedro. I didn’t understand. You are quite right. It is his birthday, and you have given him the finest gift of all.”

Walter Farquharson wrote lyrics for this story in which the worried pastor sings to Pedro “… This is serious business … / The church is a holy place set well apart … / I’ve lessons to teach you … / The road you are travelling is rough and unclean, / You race down the stairway, around corners careen. / If Jesus went bouncing, bounced high and away, / What then, little Pedro, what would people say?...”

But once he heard Pedro’s apology and explanation, he regretted his scolding.

“Thank you, Pedro, for your gifting – gift of God and gift to me. / I’m so busy being religious, a miracle I could not see. / I am sorry for my panic, sorry that I scolded you. / You know better than your teacher what it is that God will do”

The choristers invite everyone to join them - 

“Bring your wagon, bless our worship, we may all sing newest song. / When we take Christ on our journey, Christmas lasts a lifetime long.”

Note:  The source of this story is unknown.  It was used (and published) by Walter Farquharson & Co as a musical (click here for more information) and he has given permission for its use here.

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