Curations: Remembering that it happened once
In case you missed the Christmas Eve service, you can watch the entire service here (including Elana Purvis' beautiful rendition of "O Holy Night," children re-writing the Christmas story during the Children's message, and a beautiful ending with a candlelight singing of "Silent Night").
But if you missed it, you also missed my sermon. So here are the Cliff's Notes: the world Jesus was born into is our world. It didn't happen "once upon a time," but in real time, into our very real world, with all of our messiness and misery, traumas and triumphs.
I quoted part of a poem by Wendell Berry, and it is so powerful (at least to me) that I wanted to share it in full here. (You can find it below). As you enjoy these days after Christmas, I hope you will enjoy and reflect on this poem, and on the world into which God has been born: namely, this one.
"Remembering that it happened once," by Wendell Berry
Remembering that it happened once, We cannot turn away the thought, As we go out, cold, to our barns Toward the long night’s end, that we Ourselves are living in the world It happened in when it first happened, That we ourselves, opening a stall (A latch thrown open countless times Before), might find them breathing there, Foreknown: the Child bedded in straw, The mother kneeling over Him, The husband standing in belief He scarcely can believe, in light That lights them from no source we see, An April morning’s light, the air Around them joyful as a choir. We stand with one hand on the door, Looking into another world That is this world, the pale daylight Coming just as before, our chores To do, the cattle all awake, Our own white frozen breath hanging In front of us; and we are here As we have never been before, Sighted as not before, our place Holy, although we knew it not.