I’m later than usual to the fiveminutefriday link up. I was ready for Christmas, beds made, parcels wrapped, cake dosed with brandy. I was starting last minute food preparation when everything changed due to the sudden tightening of Covid travel restrictions in London and south east England.
I have cried over the sudden reversal. A knife sliced into my guts, and then, as the shock ebbed, I felt as though I was like a branch that oozes milky sap when broken. The wound is drying but the shape of the tree is changed for ever. With millions of others, my plans for Christmas have been overturned, my loved ones are bereft, and in the case of one elderly, sick relative, confused. The destination of this harsh journey through 2020 is not the one I expected.
The wise men traveled expecting to find the king they sought in a royal palace. When the star rose over a humble dwelling it would have been easy to say to each other, we have made a mistake, this is the wrong place. They trusted what they had observed in the movement of the stars and laid their offerings before the child king. They may never have known how the symbolism of their gifts would be wonderfully fulfilled in the death and resurrection of the saviour king.
Mary, however, watched and reflected. She treasured all these things in her heart and shared them with the writers of Matthew and Luke’s Gospels.
I have been posting daily an online ‘window’ of an Advent Calendar, imagining what listeners would have heard if they had been eaves droppers to the events of the first Christmas. Creating these pictures has helped me to find a gritty reality and an eternal hope; which was foretold by prophets and angels, heard by shepherds, and discerned by wise men who read the hand of God in the skies.
I wish you a joyful Christmas.