“Yes, I came from the Father into the world, and now I will leave the world and return to the Father.”
Growing up I loved performing, and like many kids, my first role was in a nativity play. I remember the teacher coming into the class and saying that whoever put their hand up first for the character would get the role. I eyed up my competition and pretended to scratch my head so my hand was that much closer to the finish line. Thankfully all the other girls wanted to be Mary and that wasn’t the role I had my eye on. We got to the end of the long list of characters and the character I really wanted to be was read out and my little hand shot up- the piece of tinsel. I got it. I was a sparkly, silver all-singing, all-dancing piece of tinsel. Hands down the best costume in the nativity. I was very pleased.
At this time of year, there are a lot of school nativities - I’m sure even this year they’re doing them masked and socially distant. A lot of people, who may never think of Jesus, are thinking about the birth of Jesus now.
But we know that the nativity story isn’t the whole story. As Christians when we think about the birth of Jesus and celebrate Christmas we always do this through the lens of what is to come. Jesus will return, and this time not in his infancy, but in amazing glory. The words in John 16 that confused the disciples, make sense to us now. Jesus had to die and rise again so that we might have life and life in the full.
Today, where can you take a moment to pause, to breathe and to remember and celebrate his birth as we eagly and hopefully desire his return?