Pause for Thought January 2016

So, what happens next?
As you read this, do you still have your Christmas decorations up? Are you waiting until Epiphany, the 12th day of Christmas? Or have you already moved on?

As I write this, the climate talks taking place on global warming in Paris are just coming to an end. Hopefully an agreement will be reached and then signed. By the time you read this, the attention of the world’s media will have moved on. In a way, that’s a shame, because what is done in the future to implement any agreements made in Paris is of far more importance.

Also, as I write this, I am preparing for Christmas celebrations – a time to remember and celebrate the birth of Jesus. Many extra people will come to Carol Services and Crib Services, boosting our congregations. But what happens next?

In Luke’s Gospel, at the end of the nativity events that he reports, Luke says “And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.” Then when Jesus was 12, Luke reports another incident, ending with “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.”

This is where Mark begins his Gospel – Jesus in his early 30’s beginning his three years of public ministry. You see, it’s great to celebrate the birth of Jesus and picture him as a baby – but what happens next is more important. He grew up – and so must our picture of him. Most of the gospels are about those three adult years, and a large proportion of each Gospel is about the week leading to his death and resurrection.
The full significance of the birth of Jesus, remembered at Christmas, can only be appreciated when we look at what happened next.

There is always an opportunity to look at what happened next – by joining us at church at other times of the year…..

Also, you might like to ask me about the Christianity Explored courses we run from time to time. There is one starting in Helpston in the first week in January. It lasts about 7 weeks and examines Mark’s Gospel – the shortest Gospel and one that only looks at Jesus’ adult life. Do call me if you want to investigate what happened next.

May I wish you a peaceful and blessed New Year.
Rev Dave Maylor