Revd Graham’s weekly message:
Some of you may know that I enjoy photography, even though I don’t think I’m particularly good at it – but I do take one or two reasonable photographs which I have posted with my weekly messages. A photograph is of course the capturing of one moment in time, and with modern photographic technology that can be thousandths of a second. I have often wondered what it would be like if we had photographs from the era of Jesus’ birth. No doubt there would be a group photograph with Mary cradling her baby with family and friends gathered around, and perhaps a few portrait snaps of the baby with Mary and Joseph.
Of course, we have none of that and not even a painting of the real thing. We have to use our imagination assisted by the descriptive words of the Gospel accounts. There have been many attempts by well-known artists at depicting the Nativity: some have become more prominent than others, and perhaps that is because of the artist’s name more than its potential accuracy.
It is good that for some things we have to use our imagination, as each of us will paint our own picture of the scene, perhaps influenced by other pictures we have seen. However, we have the tableau in our mind’s eye, be that a Nativity play in school, a painting by one of the great masters of art or our own individual depiction of the scene. We must never forget that what we are about to celebrate is the coming of Jesus Christ, God’s son, who came to restore the relationship between God and Man. I hope you can discover this reality for yourself as we move into the season of preparation that is Advent.
With God’s peace and blessing