View from the Vicarage (Nov 2017)
the nights are truly drawing. Finally winter is creeping upon us, although some
of our trees are hanging on to their remaining leaves! The run-up to Christmas
has definitely begun- I have heard Christmas songs in shops, and bright lights
are starting to appear in shop and house windows, and it’s not even December yet……
Isn’t it amazing that the birth of a small baby to an unmarried young mother in a far flung province of the Roman Empire in the first century AD can still have such an impact today? ‘Most people don’t think of that baby among all the presents and wrapping paper!’ do I hear you cry? Maybe many don’t, but what a gift Christmas celebrations are to Christian disciples around the world! Folk may not focus on or even understand the true meaning underpinning the celebrations, but half the Christian gospel message is already being feted and shared within families and communities around the world in every carol sung, every present wrapped, every fairy light twinkling- the sharing, caring, loving, giving, receiving, appreciating, sacrificing.
People really are engaging with the message of Christmas already! All we need to do is help people around us to engage with the amazing news that underpins those actions, that our Creator God loves us so much that He became human, just like as, so that we could draw closer to Him, and understand better His will and purposes for us better. The news that God’s love for us is so strong that it remains with us through all the ups and downs in our lives and through our deaths.
So let’s choose the Mary and Jesus stamps, and tell everyone why. Let’s choose the nativity scene Christmas card and share the good news of Christ’s birth among us in detail. Let’s wrap those presents with love by sharing the awesome details of the most important gift ever given at that first Christmas party in that stable in Bethlehem. There are plenty of Christmas celebrations in our churches through December. Why not invite a different neighbour to our Christingle Service? Why not bring some new friends to our Living Nativity? Why not bring some other family members to the Carol Service or Crib Service? There is something for everyone. Why not make a real difference to someone’s faith journey this Christmastide?
God give you His blessing and His peace, and inspire you to share His love
afresh in all your celebrations this Christmas and New Year!