Look Busy!

Advent Sunday

St Mary’s Whitby

There’s a bumper bar sticker I saw somewhere that says, Jesus is coming, look busy!

That is a great metaphor for this time of year isn’t it? In some ways we don’t have to pretend to be busy because with our southern hemisphere end of year coinciding with the Christmas season, most of us have no choice but to be busy. Very busy. I don’t know about you, but I always have to take a deep breath when I start putting all the November and December things into the calendar. There are end of year concerts and performances, school prize-givings and breakups, work dos, lunches and morning teas and afternoon teas and drinks and suppers for all the groups we belong to. No, we don’t have to just look busy, many of us are way too busy already.

We can try and make it easier – I try and count up how many plates I will need to produce over the next few weeks, and do a big batch of vanilla truffles to keep in the freezer, ready to hand out to the next child who says , oh mum, I forgot to tell you, there’s a shared morning tea today. Continue reading

It’s Christmas Time!

15_The light shines in the darkness_1440x900

15_The light shines in the darkness_1440x900

We have posted two new wallpapers for you to enjoy over the Christmas season. One reflects a traditional northern-hemisphere Christmas – trees in the snow, with rays of light breaking through. I like this picture, because it shows how light can always break through, no matter how bleak or cold life may look, that there is always the  resurrection power of Christ coming into the world. And we celebrate His first appearance as a tiny helpless baby – no ordinary babe, but one with an awe-inspiring destiny.

14_Make a joyful noise_.1440x900

14_Make a joyful noise_.1440×900

The other wallpaper reflects our Christmas and summer season here in New Zealand. It’s a pohutukawa tree, in full flower on a cliff overlooking the sea. This is its natural habitat, and I like what it says too – that life and joy and colour can flourish even in the stoniest, bleakest places,buffeted by wind and salt-spray, where nothing else will grow. And that the perseverance of this coastal tree will burst forth into glorious flowers – hundreds of fine red stamens, tipped with gold pollen.

If you look closely into this tree, it looks a bit like an Advent wreath I think. (Well, if the Hubble telescope can see Christmas ornaments in space..)

May God bless you this Christmas time, with people you love around you. May you reflect again on the great gift God has given us!

Here’s one of my favourite pieces, the Hallelujah Chorus, from Handel’s Messiah, performed by a flash-mob in Canada in 2010. This is how the angels would appear if they turned up in a food court! The singers all look so joyous as they announce the good news!