Monday, 4 January 2016

Noticing the Star - Sunday 3rd January 2016

There is nothing in the Bible to suggest that the star which the Magi saw was particularly bright. Indeed, the fact that so few people seem to have noticed it would imply that it wasn’t particularly bright at all. God did an amazing thing, putting a new star in the sky, and yet only a handful of people seem to have noticed. The same pattern is there in the story of the shepherds: a whole host of angels appeared to announce Jesus’ birth, but only a handful of lowly shepherds saw them.
God was doing something amazing, but only a few people knew. (Possibly no more than 10.) Which raises a question: Why them?
Millions of people celebrate Christmas, and there a billions of people on our planet, but only a relatively small proportion take much interest in what God was actually doing in the birth of Jesus. Are we special? The shepherds weren’t. Perhaps, like the Magi, we are the ones who cared to look, and bothered to respond. But they weren’t necessarily the wisest of wise people, and neither are we.
As Christians, we may be a small minority. But if, by some accident of circumstances, we have become linked to Jesus’ story, then we have a part to play. The Magi and the shepherds got off their backsides and did something. So must we!

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