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Christmas Visitor

Last Christmas, June and I received a visit from a rather distant relative (in both senses!), whom we hadn’t seen for ages. She brought us a present, but the best present was herself – that she thought so much of us that she was willing to make the journey to come to us. We felt guilty for not having visited her, and for not visiting many people at all last Christmas. I may have the excuse of being quite busy, but don’t we all?

On the first Christmas, God showed his love for the world by sending His Son Jesus. God had promised hundreds of times in scripture that he would do that, and those who were waiting for Him expected that He would come as God and King – an earthly ruler. But they were certainly not expecting what actually happened! Jesus came as the most vulnerable of human beings – a baby – born not royally, but into a humble family, to a couple not yet married, in a minor outpost of the Roman empire, in a little town…. and was born in a barn. What a great come-down, you might say! What a powerful way of demonstrating His love for those who think they’re ‘the lowest of the low’ – and showing that absolutely everyone is worthy of a visit from him. And worth dying for, too.

I expect you’ll be planning to visit some friends or relatives over the festive season. They’ll no doubt be pleased to see you, and your presence will be worth more than your presents. Whatever you do, don’t feel guilty about leaving it so long since your last visit – just accept their thanks for making the journey, and have a good time whilst you’re there.

Christmas is also a good time for making the journey to God. There are lots of ways to do that, of course, including personal prayer at home; but determinedly making a physical journey to Church can make the point that it’s part of your spiritual journey – which shepherds, wise men and many millions of people have done for over two thousand years. If you do, to any or our many services, you know you’ll be welcomed; and don’t even think of feeling guilty about not having been with us for a while. But what should you bring? The Bible says that all things belong to God, so He certainly doesn’t need a present. You’re the one he loves, and loves to see. A reminder of the last verse of the carol ‘In the bleak midwinter’:

What shall I give Him, poor as I am?

If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb.

If I were a wise man, I would do my part –

Yet what can I give Him? Give my heart.

 

May you have a happy and blessed Christmas, in the company of those whom you love and love you.

Yours in Jesus,

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