Wishing you a very Happy Christmas and every blessing for this time of year

(All the normal bits and pieces here will return after Christmas……James)

A Christmas Reflection

Mary doesn’t wrap her newborn baby in purple silk, she swaddles him with what’s available, even if it’s only strips of cloth. And she doesn’t demand a golden crib for her Son, she makes do with what’s handy, even if it’s a hay filled manger.’ ~Kathleen M.Carroll

The events of Christmas night are far from ideal. It’s not the stuff you would expect for such an important event. It’s certainly not the stuff of God or so it would seem. But God clearly had other ideas and not what anyone had expected. The same happens today as well. God often comes into our lives in the least expected place. Maybe we are trying to find God in the wrong places and forget to look in the stable. The stable is that part of our lives that may not be pretty, may not seem important and the last place we would want God. This is where God wants to be and where God wants to hold us, encourage us, help us, guide us, direct us, energise us and be with us every step of the way.

There is no such thing as a perfect Christmas. Every advertisement that you see on television suggests strongly that this is the way it must be. What a pressure to be under! All any of us can do is our best, to make it special in our own way and to make it as relaxing as we can. We need this time to recharge and revitalise in the depths of winter. In these precious days before Christmas, the invitation is to leave the stable door open, even ajar and let God do the rest. Happy Christmas to you and all your family and every blessing on you as we head towards 2023.

Thought For The Week

There is a Christmas story called ‘The Mice in the Piano’ about a family of mice that lived in a large piano. They loved their piano world and the music that often came to them. It filled all the dark places with sounds and a beautiful harmony. At first the mice were very impressed with it. They drew comfort and wonder from the thought that there was someone who made the music. Although this someone was invisible to them, they felt close to whoever this invisible might be. They became known as the ‘unseen player’.

Then one day a daring mouse climbed up a part of the piano that no one had dared to go before and returned in a very thoughtful mood. The mouse had made a discovery at how the music was made. Wires were the secret. He had found tightly stretched wires of graduated lengths which trembled and vibrated. Now the mice had to revise all their old beliefs of how the music came. Only the most conservative of the mice could still believe in the unseen player.
Later another mouse explorer returned from another exploring adventure and came back with a new discovery about the origin of the music. Hammers were now the true secret. There were dozens of hammers that danced and leaped upon the wires to create the music. They dismissed the theory of the unseen player and described it all as a myth. Meanwhile the unseen player continued to play.
It may only be a fable story but it reminds us that at Christmas the unseen player continues to play. Some can call it a myth. Some call Christmas an exaggerated story. But it is also called the greatest story ever told. At its heart is a reminder that while God may be unseen, the music continues to be heard and the music continues to flow. God continues to love us and be with us.
A piano can only work because everything is connected in harmony. Everything works together as one, the player, the keys, the hammers, the strings and the music flows. The music is heard at happy times and also during sad and difficult times too. The music is symbolic of love and at Christmas we celebrate so much love and kindness all around us. We also celebrate God’s beautiful love of us. If there was no Christmas story, the piano would be silent. Some call it a myth. But Christmas is a beautiful celebration of God’s love for us. It is a celebration of the unseen player who continues to play always.

The Thought For The Week is updated each Monday