Happy Christmas everyone! I expect many of you by Christmas lunch will know what you have received as Christmas presents. I often wonder though how do you open your gifts from other people. Some folk I know are rippers, just pull off the paper willy-nilly, paper everywhere until the contents are disclosed. Having said that I would challenge almost anyone to unwrap a present prepared by my late mother. She used to use yard after yard (or metre after metre dependent on how you measure length) of sellotape. Even if you could tell what lay beneath the wrapping it would take you absolutely ages to get there. I’m certain stationers would rub their hands with expectation each September as she prepared to wrap her gifts for that year.
Some folks I know will wish you on the day “Happy Christmas” then happily point out its only 365 days till (next) Christmas. I have even come across one family for whom it is Christmas every day, I couldn’t stand the pace. However you feel about what Christmas is all about – Jesus is the reason for the season. There are those who would point at history and paganism to point out Christianity purloined the occasion because no-one knows the exact date on which Jesus was born. It doesn’t matter whether or not the date is accurate, what is important is that we recognise the human birth of the Son of God.
It’s a day we enjoy sharing food, appreciating family and sometimes wondering what to do with the odd present. It’s a day for remembering years past as well as family members and friends no longer with us. It’s a time of thanksgiving for Jesus, for family members past and present and for friends who we may value over family.
Christmas carries with it such memories, mostly happy but also some bitter sweet ones too. I am certain many of you will remember different Christmas memories – school days and parties, family gatherings maybe shared with grandparents, for those who served in the Armed Forces seeing the Officers waiting and serving at Christmas time or maybe carol singing round a Christmas tree, a piano or with a full band. Christmas 2020 may be remembered for a completely different reason, lockdown and isolation notwithstanding. May the Prince of Peace grant you all the joy of Christmas.
“Hark the herald angel sing Glory to the newborn King!”
John Pugh (Rev) Wymeswold Methodist