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The Blessed Event
There was no
That first Christmas.
rarely, if ever, happen.
Though they do in the rarified worlds of
or of television,
in the cinema
or even in politics
where the long-awaited-blessed-event
is likely to turn out as an oversold commercial
or a political campaign
with a barb in it, boding no good
to the ones who swallow the bait,
or, more to the point, to the unfortunates
who are naïve enough to really believe
all the hype.
among humans are great to anticipate
Remember "The Lord of the Rings"
"Lord of the Dance"
or even "The Greatest Show on Earth".
There are many others
touted as life-changing, but
they have been lost to memory
an unimportant footnote on human history.
Then what of Christmas?
What anticipation do we remember?
What a fever of waiting which resolved into
stumbling sleepily over the newly acquitted
possessions (mostly plastic)
Mothers puzzling over the latest gizmo for the kitchen
(no home should be without one!)
and far too many sweets.
Then after putting the diet back for six months
airing thoughts that should have been left out of the air
the obligatory Christmas passes
for another year
in which we all plan to do better
and get on with the real business of living.
The events which really change lives
are rarely anticipated
but seen looking back in after years
with a wonder of recognition
nobody expected the advent
the birth of a peasant child
to be REALLY IMPORTANT.
So nobody was waiting for it, only for other things
but after his death
(which was not a long-awaited-blessed-event either).
Then, how many other, important
or creative people
received no critical acclaim until after death
when fawning biographers
blaze the names abroad;
(whom in life they would have scorned to know).
The peasant child meanwhile
changed many lives
some to joy and freedom,
others he challenged to the point of destruction
(which was why he had to go).
This Christ was mostly ignored, from his birth to his death
discarded as of no value
scorned as one with no breeding
passed over as unimportant
or irrelevant to the times in which he lived.
Rev Robert Allen, first published for Lead Worship AIM Publications