Wednesday, December 16, 2020

‘For We Saw His Star when It Rose' by Patty Smith Hall

‘When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and stars, which thou hast ordained; What is a man, that thou art mindful of him? And the son of man that thou visitest him?’  Psalms 8:3-4

When I was a little girl, Christmas was my favorite time of the year. We’d put up our tree, one fresh from my Granddaddy Smith’s nursery, the second week of December and spend a Sunday afternoon decorating. I remember lying under it, watching all the twinkly lights reflect off the store-bought ornaments and tinsel and thinking it was the most beautiful tree I’d ever seen.

Over the next two weeks, Mama spent most of her time in the kitchen, making her famous (well, it was famous throughout our family and friends!) homemade fudge. A chocolatey piece could send you into a diabetic coma! She always made enough to give to family and friends, a double helping for the preacher because he had such a sweet tooth.

Before we knew it, it was Christmas week! There was a Christmas pageant at church my sister, brother and I always took part in. And the parties—we’d celebrate with friends early in the week, then turn our attention toward family. Both of my parents came from large families, so the houses were bursting at the seams with cousins, aunts and uncles, grand and great grandparents.

Such good memories.

Yet, there was one small disappointment that I hid away in my heart all of those years. Every
Christmas Eve night as Mama and Daddy packed up the car for the Smith family party, I would take a moment and stand in the driveway, searching the night sky for the Christmas star. I was too young and new in my faith to understand that December 25th wasn’t when Christ was born or that the date was originally a pagan holiday. All my innocent heart knew was that the news of Christ’s birth was so wonderful, it deserved a Christmas star every year.

That’s why I’m excited by what astronomers are calling the ‘great conjunction.’ Starting on December 21st, Jupiter and Saturn will align in the night sky to form what some are calling an early Christmas star. According to, a conjunction happens when two planets appear incredibly close to one another in the sky because they line up with Earth in their respective orbits. “This rare event is special because of how bright the

planets will be and how close they get to each other in the sky,” Virginia Tech astronomer Nahum Arav said in a statement.

I don’t believe in chance or coincidence. Everything that happens is allowed by God to be use according to His purpose. So, what is His purpose in giving us this ‘conjunction’ at this moment in time, an event that hasn’t been seen by the naked eye since March 1225? Could it be that, in this year of overwhelming sickness and death, of a country split apart by violence and hatred, God wants to remind us of the eternal hope He sent over two thousand years ago?

As I look up into the night sky next week, I pray you’ll join me in praising God for the promise He fulfilled through Christ Jesus that long-ago Christmas night.

Merry Christmas!

I would take a moment and stand in the driveway, searching the night sky for the Christmas star. via @pattywrites #SeriouslyWrite


Patty Smith Hall lives in North Georgia with her husband of 36+ years, Danny. Her passion is to write tender romances based in little-known historical moments. The winner of the 2008 ACFW Genesis award in historical romance, she is published with Love Inspired Historical, Barbour and Winged Publishing, and is a contributor to the Seriously Writing blog as well as Journey magazine. Patty is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency.