Christmas: The best kept secret?
According to ‘Bono’ the lead singer/songwriter of my favourite rock band, U2, ‘a secret is something you tell one other person’ (from the song ‘The Fly’, 1991). As I reflected on that claim, I began to see that there is some truth within it. How often have you heard people say to you (or you have said to them!) “don’t tell anybody, but…….”.
As we approach Christmas and the celebration of the birth of Christ, I wonder if the message of Christmas is becoming a secret? As the decorations go up and the lights are turned on, I wonder what is actually being celebrated in the minds of many? The true meaning of Christmas seems to be increasingly a secret as the sacred and the secular move further apart. But perhaps this is all part of God’s plan and we see this in the way he chose to reveal himself to the world.
In the nativity story in the gospels of Matthew and Luke, the angel visits Mary and Joseph individually with the message of the incarnation and the need to trust in God; only one small group of shepherds are visited by the angel on the hillside and encouraged to visit the new-born child lying in the manger. And in the Magi, we have another small group who alone seem able to interpret the mystery of the events unfolding before them, which fires them into action.
So perhaps the story of Christ, which began with the Word ‘in the beginning’ and continues to this day, has always been a secret to be shared with one other person? A secret to be passed on in love and in the trust that God will work through that sharing.
So who is the person you will tell the secret of Christmas to this year?
With every blessing to you and your loved ones.