Saturday, 8 December 2012

Cradling God

Our Quiet Christmas Service is an attempt to acknowledge that this season is not one of hope and joy for everyone. We light candles and hang memorials on the tree and think of those we miss. And, somehow, there is an honesty in that service where no one is required or expected to be cheerful, where folk are encouraged to be real. And, always, the plight of an unmarried teenage mother, far from home, struggling to make sense of all that is happening comes into focus and the Nativity, stripped bare speaks into the silence. The silence of love lost and dreams abandoned, the silence in which the anguished sigh of God is heard. And God's presence is felt in the starkness of the manger unadorned by fairy lights, in the rawness of grief and loss, breathing warmth that thaws bodies numbed by pain,embracing hearts laid bare in sorrow, cradling fragile souls as fiercely and lovingly as God's son was cradled in his mother's arms.
Into such a world, God comes.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


ramona said...

I'm planning our congregations' (and community's) first Blue Christmas service. Thanks for the post and sharing. I'd love to know more about the memorials on the tree - what a wonderful idea!

liz said...

Ramona, there's a wonderful discussion on Blue Christmas on the RevGals Facebook page that might be helpful.
We give everyone a star (or similar) as they arrive and ask them to write the names of the folk they are remembering. Then, during the service, everyone is invited to bring these forward and hang them on the tree and then light a Tealight which, this year, we placed on a large cardboard cross covered in aluminium foil - they looked beautiful reflected in the cross and that gave me a chance to link Jesus of the cradle and the grave. Hope this helps. X

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