The Slow incarnation (or should that be Sloe – the Vodkin was good this year…)
We’re done once again for another ol’ year
so pack up the crib, put away the stable.
Take back the presents that weren’t quite able
to fill the need of that ancient cradle
and begin the new diet to lose all the pounds
that appeared, as if by magic, overnight, from the mounds
of turkey or pudding and mince pies that were eaten
giving thanks to the king of the feasts as we’ve beaten
the rush to be rested, to say with a sigh
– did you have a good Christmas? – on boxing day night?
But the feasting’s not over no not at all
12 days of feasting twelve days, and twelve nights is this festival long,
and it’s still going for some as they raise with a song
a glass of sweet wine to the one in the manger
who’s out in the cold and in very great danger
of just being one who’s a seasonal stranger.
So as the festival draws to its inevitable ending and eyes are all turned to new year list rending, with champagne on ice, and parties a plenty, canapés, cocktails to countdown to a moment; why does a number
mean more than the incarnate wonder?
But the beauty of God come to earth as a babe is not in starlight or angels nor the shepherd’s story,
but the simple truth of the mid winter fest that a baby grows slowly.
In the same way un-noticed as day builds on day and year after year
the Christ Child draws near
with wonder and yearning each one to himself.
It’s a slow incarnation for Jesus the Christ,
the God become man in the oldest disguise.
It’s a slow incarnation for the Lord of all earth
from humble beginning from virgin birth
to back lanes with vagabonds, thieves and outcasts
he’ll walk with each one who gives him the chance to reach deep in the soul to the farthest depths
to capture the heart and, well, we should know the rest
if we’re given the chance to give him the welcome as the child grows within us his presence is blessed.
So take down the turkey and finish the tree,
(That doesn’t sound right – too much sherry?)
When the trimmings are gone, Christmas jumpers no more worn
It will be time for us to say: A baby was born.
Born in a stable, born in the night,
born to bring God into our sight, but born for a purpose – to make a new start:
Born into each person, into every heart.