Posted by: Carey Memorial Baptist Church, Kettering | December 3, 2011

The Strong Word December 2011/January 2012

A friend of mine has decided to repaint his banisters up the stairs and along the landing.

It is quite a job, as he has decided to go for the natural look, which means stripping down the paintwork to the bare wood then staining and varnishing the result. It is long and tedious, but preparation is the key. Remove the old paint from all 26 uprights, plus the handrails and the rest will be easy! It is in the preparation that the job will succeed or fail. But it is not easy or quick.

It is not surprising at this time of the year we should consider the long preparations that God made for his son over many years. We will also travel through advent preparing not for the Christmas dinner we shall eat, nor the presents we shall give or even the cards we need to write, but to prepare ourselves, our hearts and minds, to receive the baby Jesus into our lives again. To consider what this means, as with all new babies, what changes this involves and what chaos will arrive in our lives with the baby and his demands on our time. Life is never the same again, new parents tell me.

It is also a time of joy. A time to celebrate that in Jesus Christ, God is with us. We will not now be left out in the cold, lost in our sins and ourselves, but are able to embrace light and life and a new future that Jesus brings with him, and offers to us.

I am sure that like me you are looking forward to the many ways at Carey we shall express our joy and hope as we sing carols, hear God’s word and be involved in a variety of ways with the message of Christmas. To tell the good news that Jesus has come to save us from our sins and to bring in his kingdom.

The first Christmas was possible because ordinary people allowed Jesus to come in and to disrupt their relatively quiet but busy lives. Are we available to be used and led by our heavenly Father or are we too busy at the moment?

Jane and I wish all friends of Carey a very Happy Christmas and a peaceful new year

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