Yet in thy dark streets shineth, the everlasting light.
The hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight.
Perhaps... if he had a skill they did not possess, a way of working the wood just so... Often men are more open to being taught than women... and that can be another small town story point.
Was Jesus an ice-breaker? I bet he was. Who can resist a baby, an adorable little brown-haired, brown-eyed boy with the sweetest smile? I use this in many of my stories, allowing babies and small children to be the "bridge" to understanding. Art Linkletter used to have a show and write books about how "Kids Say the Darnedest Things" and it was so funny and true! I remember that show being in re-runs and marveling at those truths from such little mouths.
So I can envision that baby king, unknown and unrecognized until he was brought to the temple... I can see him winning hearts, one by one. Because a baby changes everything. Always.
And that's another story point for you: A Baby Changes Everything
When you bring a baby into the world or into the story equation, everything changes.
The emotional changes instantly because there's nothing like a baby to instill love, joy, panic, fear, happiness and gratitude into a heart and anyone with children knows the truth in this. It is the epitome of mixed emotions... But then there are so many other changes that take place in the midst of the crazy emotional ride.
Physical changes, timing changes, lack of sleep, worry, work (babies are a lot of work!!!), and did I mention sleep? :)
But there are more internal changes that ride this small-town train. Responsibility raises its fierce head. Goals take on more meaning because now the people/parents/heroes/heroines aren't just fighting for themselves... they're fighting for a child.
So in this small town, overflowing with visitors and migrants trying to fulfill the law, a child is born. A son is given.
And as authors and readers, we can see that effect.
That's the small town ripple effect we should bring to modern-day writing. It doesn't have to be earth-shattering prose to bear world-changing beauty.
It needs to reflect the reality of the small town, the good, the bad, the ugly and the serene... and touch hearts in a way that stirs the emotion of the moment and the hope of the future. For in the darkest night, cloaked beneath a midnight sky... we can be that light to others. And our words can take that light not just to them... but to their hearts.
Hey, come on inside, warm up a bit... I'm manning the coffee bar AND I've got a $15 Starbucks card up for grabs today... Not to tempt you in, but to give you something to smile about, because it's nice to get a little surprise now and again! Especially in the crazy busy month of December... when sweet peace should reign in our frenetic hearts!
Join me inside and tell me what is it you like about small towns?
ALSO!!!! On December 31st, we're hosting our annual Seekerville Rockin' it New Year's Eve and our theme is "Kick Discouragement to the Curb"... And we're including our own brand of PET THERAPY throughout the day, so if you've got a pet who has helped you stay sane, normal, on-task and focused.... Send your pic of the pet to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell me your name and the pet's name... and we'll see how many of our furry friends can fit into a delightfully optimistic rolling blog!