Vicar’s December Letter

Dear friends,

As I write this letter it’s a cold wintry night, yet last week it was (just about) warm enough to eat lunch outside. The normal patterns of weather through the seasons that we experienced in years gone by doesn’t seem to apply any more. As I have been thinking about this letter I have been thinking about the Church calendar, which takes us through the Church seasons, year by year.  The Church seasons take us through the year and encourage to engage with different topics and different aspects of God’s character and our relationship with him.

We spend much of December in Advent, a time of preparation as we look forward to Christmas and think about what we ought to do to be ready to meet God’s Son, both now and when he returns. Christmas itself is a time of celebration as we thank God for the gift of his Son and the fact that God chose to become one of us.

Much of our time during Advent though is inevitably spent preparing for the Christmas season. Thinking about gifts and decorations, food and drink. Planning celebrations and gatherings with family and friends. Working out logistics of how to see those close to us in a short space of time, particularly where travel and staying over is involved. So how can we engage with the real purpose of Advent? How can we engage with the real purpose of Christmas?

Perhaps we could try to spend some time each day during Advent reading our Bible. Perhaps we could spend some time each day during Advent in prayer. Perhaps we could make an effort to think of those around us for whom Christmas will be a difficult time, those who are unwell, lonely, frightened, bereaved.  But, behind all of these things, we need to think about who Jesus is and why he came to be one of us. Jesus was, and is, not only God’s son, but God – God with us, Emmanuel. How amazing is that? God choosing to come here and be born as one of us. To identify with us, to walk with us, share with us, experience what we experience and, ultimately to die for us and reconcile us to God. If we can get our heads around this, then how should we respond? Not an easy question to answer, but perhaps one to think about as we travel through Advent and approach Christmas.

Let me know your thoughts.

God Bless,

Mike

Comments are closed.