Christmas Comes Early!

Because Virgin Media deprived us of an internet connection, as mentioned in the previous post, the words "this morning" actually refer to Sunday morning.



Hello everyone!  I feel happier since I went to the Christmas lessons and hymns service this morning.  Rosemary, one of our local preachers, led the service this morning.  We started the service with setting the scene by lighting the first three Advent Candles.  The reading was from Matthew 11, where John the Baptist in prison wanted to know if Jesus was the expected one.  Jesus sent John’s disciples back telling them to look at what has been happening, the blind able to see, the lame able to walk and the good news preached to the poor.  Jesus then told the crowd of the importance of John as the forerunner preparing the way for the Lord.  The emphasis in the readings was on future hope and justice for all.


The choir sang two carols and the readings began from Isaiah, Micah, with Luke, Matthew, and concluding with John 1 v 1-14.  I still want to bow my head when I hear the words, especially in the old translation, ‘the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory (the glory as of the only begotten of the Father) full of grace and truth.’ It takes me back to my childhood growing up at a high Anglican Church, St Wilfred’s Church, Harrogate, where I learnt to genuflect as I left my seat, as I was in awe of the presence of God.  Those words in John’s gospel sum up the wonder of God becoming man in Jesus; Charles Wesley expressed it perfectly in the words in his hymn, which we sang this morning:

Let earth and heaven combine,

Angels and men agree.

To praise in songs divine

The incarnate Deity,

Our God contracted to a span.

Incomprehensibly made man.  


The Christmas hymns, which we sang, told the story of the wonderful gift we received in Jesus.  I had sung these carols all my life, but when I gave my life to Jesus at the age of nineteen, I understood what I had been singing about all those years!  It was as if a veil had been removed from my eyes and I could see clearly!  I love Christmas as we celebrate with family, but I know Jesus loves me and accepts me now.  He is with us and each day I can ask him to come afresh into my life.  This is the day that the Lord has made and I rejoice and am glad in it.

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