Friday, November 6, 2015

"Mary's Christmas Story" by Lucinda Weeks

Mary's Christmas Story
(Women Who Met Jesus Volume III)
by Lucinda Weeks

Mary's Christmas Story is the third book in the Women Who Met Jesus series by Lucinda Weeks. The Kindle version is currently ON SALE for only $0.99. The paperback version has also been released just in time for Christmas. The author stops by today to share an excerpt from the book. You can also enter our exclusive giveaway for a chance to win a paperback or Kindle copy of Mary's Christmas Story.
Also available for only $0.99 and featuring bright, new covers: The Adulteress (read my blog post) and Veronica (read my blog post).

On the night of her father's death, young Mary is visited by the angel Gabriel who brings her a message of comfort and peace that she has been chosen by God to become the mother of the Messiah. Mary gladly accepts God's glorious plan for her life. However Mary soon finds that she has many challenges ahead of her as her own mother and her beloved Joseph finds it hard to believe.
This is a beautiful and exciting look at the life of Mary and the close connection that she has with Jesus. Told according to Protestant belief it tells about the romance she shares with her husband Joseph. This story focuses on the first 12 years of Jesus's life. It is filled with beautiful stories of what his childhood might have been like. It is a story of redemption and healing for those around Jesus.

On the Night of Jesus’s Birth
A short while later, we were surrounded by a group of twelve men who rode into town on the backs of camels. These men were very elaborately dressed in bright silk green robes, with red silk capes draped around their shoulders. They all appeared to be wealthy men, as they wore gold chains around their necks and gold rings on their fingers. Three of the men wore golden crowns on their heads, decorated with red rubies, purple amethyst and emerald green stones.
The spokesperson for the group, a tall and broad shouldered man, stepped forward. He bowed his head and nodded before he spoke in Hebrew, with an Italian accent.
“Hello, my name is Avichai,” he said humbly with eyes full of wonder.
“These men are the Magi,” he said turning slightly; he stretched out his arm and motioned to the men behind him. By the words Avichai spoke, and the fact that he was dressed distinctly different from the other men, it was apparent that Avichai was not an official member of the group. Instead, he acted as an interpreter for the others.
“We have seen the star of David in the heavens,” Avichai continued, interpreting for the Magi.
“We have come to worship the new King.” I was amazed that the Magi had recognized the star and stepped out in faith that they would find Jesus here.
“These men are astronomers, who believe that God has recorded the gospel in the stars that he would send his divine and holy son to the earth to be born. They have watched the heavens, for God to reveal the exact time and place of our saviors birth. We noticed the star appear in the night sky about a week ago. It appeared to travel from the region of Galilee and come to rest here in Bethlehem, directly above this stable.”
I was in awe that this magnificent star had guided these men to find us. It had appeared in the sky at the time that we left Nazareth and paralleled our journey here to Bethlehem. Neither Joseph nor I had seen the star above us until it drew near to the earth and became like a strobe of bright white light.
“The three Kings humbly recognize their low position in life. The Kings are honored to worship the King of all Kings,” Avichai continued.
The three kings emerged from their camels and approached us each carrying wooden treasure boxes, in their hands. The first King bowed low to the earth and stretched out his arms to present the square wooden box made from cedar wood. He lifted the lid revealing a blue velvet lined interior filled with gold coins. I gasped in awe of the gold imagining there must have been enough gold to help us care for Jesus through adulthood.
“The first King is the King of Yemen named Gaspar. Gaspar is from the desert region of Ramlat al-Sab atayan, the ruler of the Sabean people. The second King is Belshazzar, from the coastal region of Himyar ruler over the Himyarite people. King Belshazzar lifted the lid on his treasure chest made from dark mahogany wood. Inside the ornately designed box, King Belshazzar presented Jesus with a bowl of what looked like chunks of pineapple. I raised my eyebrow curiously and forged a faint smile, not knowing what the gift was that he presented.
“Behold, a gift truly fit for a king,” Avichai said, reading the look of confusion on my face. “Behold sweet smelling sap of the Yemen Boswellia sacra tree, better known as Frankincense. When the Frankincense is heated it gives off the most delicious aroma.” King Belshazzar brought the Frankincense near enough to my face that I could smell the rich savory aroma that drowned out the foul stench of the animals, who made their home in the stable.
“The third King is Melchior, from the Yemen upland region of Minean.” King Melchior opened the lid on his treasure box fashioned from finely polished gold. Inside the box was a vile of thick yellow liquid, like honey and a bowl of what resembled kernels of corn.
I smiled guessing that the liquid was a type of perfume and the bowl of waxy looking corn was a type of incense. I looked into Avichai’s eyes that sparkled beneath the moon’s glow and looked for answers. Avichai was a man to be admired, very intelligent and knowledgeable of the foreign people. 
“May the King present the purest form of Myrrh? Myrrh is the blood of the Commiphora Myrrha tree,” Avichai explained. “The Myrrh is a natural gum resin that is a perfume, an incense and a medicine. It is sought after by people everywhere for its healing properties as well as its rich aromatic fragrance”.
After the Kings came presenting their gifts, the remaining Magi formed a single file line. One by one, they stepped forward, admired baby Jesus, and spoke blessings over him in their native tongue. Then I could hear the faint pattering sound of a drum. Par rum pa pum pum pum par rum pa pum  pum, could be heard as the Magi stepped away from the manger scene.
Behind the last Magi came a young boy who appeared to be about twelve years old. He wore sandals and a short striped tunic. He carried a drum hung around his neck with a leather strap. The boy shivered but was unconcerned with the biting cold wind. I smiled imagining he was exactly what Jesus might look like some day. He was adorable with rosy pink cheeks and white cotton shepherd’s headdress tied with a cord behind his head. He began to sing as he played his drum.
“I am a poor shepherd boy,” he sang out with a painfully agonizing screech. “I have come to see the new born king,” he continued struggling to stay on key. He continued to play his drum pa rum pa pum pum rum pa pum pum. I smiled seeing that he was truly giving a heartfelt effort to honor baby Jesus with his music…

Praise for the Book
"This is a wonderful story of life purpose that reveals how we can all live the greatness that God has in store for each of us as we allow Him to take total charge of our lives and follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit as Mary did. Part III in a series titled The Women Who Met Jesus, this is a truly amazing story that will warm your heart and empower you to follow Jesus." ~ Margaret Lukasik
"Very beautiful and realistic story. I loved the vivid characters and the simple message of God’s love for all humanity." ~ Elleny Cartagena
"This story is one that deserves to be read over and over, every Christmas season." ~ Robert S. Canizales
"I loved this story! It has a wonderful Christmas message. Unforgettable characters and great story." ~ LC
"I enjoyed reading this book truly original. Exciting read, hard to put down." ~ William R. Washington

From the Author
I have been writing fiction as a hobby when I was eight. I've written as a ghostwriter for national magazines and websites. I have been a Christian believer in Jesus Christ for more than thirty years and began writing Christian fiction as a way of sharing Christ's love and to share with others the talent he gave me to write. I strive to write in a way that glorifies Christ first of all and to show in my writings of his divine love and mercy.
In 2005 I earned a degree in biblical studies from Ambassadors of Faith Christian Center and Seminary in Saint Joseph, Missouri, which has helped enhance my Biblically-based writings.

Enter our exclusive giveaway for a chance to win one of two autographed paperback copies (US only) or one of 20 Kindle copies of Mary's Christmas Story by Lucinda Weeks (international).