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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

7 January 2015: Brian Blogg, Petersfield United Reformed Church

Life is full of surprises!

Well, it certainly was for a group of working class men on the nightshift out on the hills in Israel. The night's work was taking its normal course, warming hands over an fire and discussing the latest problems being faced by their sheep; disease, poor grazing, wolf attacks etc. when suddenly it seemed that the sky was filled with lightening flashes that instead of disappearing after the initial bolt just grew in intensity! Not unnaturally they were terrified but a voice told them not to be afraid and that God's long promised Messiah was being born that very night in the nearby town of Bethlehem. It was an angel urging them to go and see for themselves. At this moment the sky was filled with thousands of angels singing praises to God.

Sure enough they found the new mother Mary with her husband at her side and there in a stable stall was a child just a few hours old. They recognised something more than 'just a baby' for they went out telling everyone about this remarkable event although it would seem that others who peeped in at that stable door saw nothing out of the ordinary!

A week later the proud parents took their baby up to the big city of Jerusalem. Again the majority took little notice; just another family going into the temple for the traditional service. But one old man Simeon and an aged widow Anna looked at the child and recognised him as God's promised Messiah, the one who was to be the Saviour of the world.

It begs the question as I look into that manger do I see 'just a baby' or do I recognise the one who is the Christ, the Son of the Living God?

 

Don't forget the PACT AGM in St Peter's on Wednesday 14 January at 7:30 pm

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