Pastor's Letter

Dear friends,

Well, one thing is certain: this Christmas will be different… We hope to have a few Christmas events, but nowhere near the prolific output of previous years.

I can’t claim I’m enjoying this – you all know I’m quite a fan of Christmas – but maybe it will help remind us that the Nativity isn’t really a cartoonish fairy-tale with cute angels and fluffy sheep. It speaks of real people in real historical situations and locations, and that first Christmas wasn’t quite what they had expected either. And maybe we can find some comfort in that thought:

Even if we can’t carry out our Christmas plans, we can commiserate with the baffled teenage girl whose life was turned upside down when she was told she would become the (unwed) mother of the Messiah.

Whether or not we can travel to see friends and family, we can celebrate God’s providence in using a Roman census to bring Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem.

Whether or not we’re allowed to sing carols, we can enjoy the angel choir singing the praises of the newborn King of peace.

Whether or not we are able to gather for worship, we can run with the shepherds to Bethlehem to worship the Messiah in a place where nobody would have expected God to appear.

Whether or not we can share presents with each other, we can marvel at the prophetic gifts of the Magi, proclaiming (as interpreted by the carol) that Jesus was born to be both “priest and king and sacrifice” – not quite how people were expecting the Lord to set his people free!

Christmas is really one big, glorious reminder that human wisdom is fallible and our lives may not go the way we had hoped… But also that whatever happens, God is working his purpose out; and through it all he proves that he is indeed Emmanuel – God With Us.

Happy Christmas!

(December 2020)

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Page last updated: 29th November 2020 8:09 AM