Mariane Doktor, servant and writer

A journey in creativity and faith

Category: God’s love (page 2 of 5)

Laid in a manger

In many homes there are small nativity scenes. There are shepherds, sheep, cattle, a donkey, Joseph, Mary and baby Jesus. They might look like dolls, and children and simple souls (Mr. Bean) feel like playing with the nativity scene.

There exists a romantic idea about rural life, the romantic thoughts about having a small ecological farm. Remember the song about Old MacDonald?

Let me tell how it really is in a stable. I grew up in the country. My dad had a few calves and some sheep. I often helped him in the stable. I made name tags to the calves, both the calves and the lambs were cute. I talked to them, but I never got attached to them, and I knew they were animals which had to be slaugthered one day.
There is often cold and dark in a stable. The hay is soft, but it is also scratchy and not clean. It is mixed with the urine and the excrements of the animals. The fodder is dry, not like oatmeal without milk, but like hard grain.
When sheep have lambs, the lambs can lie in the hay under a small heat lamp. Shortly after the birth, the lambs must stand on their feet. Sometimes the sheep cannot take care of their lambs. Sometimes lambs die.
I’m a mother and I would never give birth in a stable, only if I had to. My dad and I only went to the stable when we took care of the animals.

Sheep and lamb
Mary and Joseph sought vacancy at the hostel, but the owner didn’t think there was room for a woman in labor. Mary had to seek shelter in a stable, maybe because the contractions grew in intensity. There is no couch, bed or blanket in a stable. There is not even a chair, there might be a stool. A stable is cold, moist and not totally clean. Mary and Joseph had no towels, bed or cradle. Jesus was layed in a manger together with the hay and maybe a little grain.
Jesus, Messiah, the son of God was born in a stable like an animal. Jesus was a lamb already from birth, who was destined to be slaughtered. Jesus is God’s lamb, who God sacrificed to reconcile himself with us.

He was oppressed and afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth. (Is 53:7)

Merry Christmas!


The Christmas present

“What do you wish for Christmas?”

“I don’t know, I’ll think about it. I’ll call back later.”

I go for a walk
Rainy weather
Windy weather
I can’t see the road any longer
I fall
Into a ditch
I land in a blackberry bush
Rotten berries
Stinging thorns
I fight myself back on the road
I pass the barbed-wire fence
A blackberry branch stick out
Brushes my arm
I should have stayed home

The clouds move
The moon wakes up
My eye catches a star
Lamp posts far away
The storm can’t shake them

The lamp posts look like crosses
There are lights in the crosses
I think about him,
Who hang on a cross
He died on a cross
He sacrificed himself
He redeemed us
Took our punishment,
The Bible says

I don’t wish anything
I’ve got what I
(didn’t know I)
The words about his death on Calvary
are the gift wrapping paper
When I unwrap the gift
I understand.
I see God’s father-heart
God sacrificed his beloved son for us
Because he loves us


Is an ice age coming?

“When will it snow? My daughter asked me a few days ago.
“I don’t know. It may take a while”, I replied.
“No!” Her disappointment was obvious.
Then the meteorologists predicted snow, but the snow stayed away from my part of the country, until we woke up to a snowstorm, Sunday morning. Snow became sleet and rain, and we, grown-ups, nodded to each other.
Now Monday afternoon I can see I was wrong. The snow lies as a blanket on my lawn, bathed in sunshine.
The meteorologists say it won’t snow again for some time now. They might be wrong.
We can make ourselves wise and clever, but we can’t predict everything. I don’t think anybody foresaw the terror attack on Paris.
Every time I read the news or observe discussions (quarrels) on Facebook, it seems like there will soon come an ice age in the entire world. Many meters of snow has fallen into the ventricles of the Islamists.

Will it be Christmas? Can Christmas-joy grow in the frozen ground this year?
Suddenly, something else steps into my mind.

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The Eiffel Tower goes dark

November is plodding
The trees expose their fragile branches
A drop rolls down
the cheek of a leaf
The last flowers wither
the storm rages
Raindrops are pouring down

We miss the summer
and our loved ones, who have left us
The TV shouts
the breaking news

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Are you worried?

The trees will soon have lost their leaves. What should I buy him for Christmas? Maybe my car will have a flat tire again. The vacuum cleaner, the camera and the kitchen scale are broken. What will be the next thing to break? The weather forecasters predict more storms to come…It will be colder outside, snow might come, the roads will be slippery… He said today he felt sick, I hope we’re not all going to have the flu. She has heard dirty swearwords, I hope she will not begin to use them too. I thought I had time, but I can’t make it in time to write the Christmas series. What should I make for dinner tonight? Where did time go? It was here a moment ago! Hey…where am I driving?



“Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matt 6:33)

Let’s read the verse in context.

“No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
25 Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? 28 And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matt 6:25-34)

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