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Thought for the Week – 25th December 2021

Perhaps unsurprisingly, a year ago, I, along with many others was trying to reconcile Christmas with Covid. I see that I wrote optimistically about vaccines that would eventually allow a return to normality. I wasn’t entirely wrong, but we are now faced with new uncertainties but all-too-familiar worries; is it save to meet? What should I do? On one level, religious faith offers little beyond platitudes; we are not divinely protected from Covid, or worry or anxiety. So what can we offer?

The Christian answer is that at Christmas we mark a resetting of history; God entering our world as one us. So often our Christmas carols get this wrong; the baby Jesus did cry, like any other human baby because he was a human baby, not God pretending to be one us, “veiled in flesh”. It is only through this total acceptance of all that it means to be human, frail, weak and mortal, that the divine can help us, by showing how we can partake of the divine nature, of living in pure love. It is a process that at best we can only catch in glimpses; but in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus we see what is possible, to live life in or out of Covid season as God intends.

Rev David Poyner