I was privileged to a take a service in another church outside the Benefice last weekend, and strangely, I had a Pantomime Dame in the congregation! I was asked if that was OK which of course it was – after all, it doesn’t happen every week. I can recall from my Sunday School days being taught a verse from the book of Samuel in the Bible that says, “Mortals look at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart.” I can remember that as a child going to church meant wearing your best clothes, being smartly dressed and wearing a shirt and tie; it was of its age and time.
As those words from the Bible indicate, it is not what we see on the outside that matters but what is in the heart. It is not from what people see that we can be judged, but from what we believe in our hearts to be true. Advent is a time when we are to examine our lives and consider if our relationship with God is the best that it can be. Not only should we be making our preparations for the Christmas season, but also taking time to make sure that we are ready for the second coming of Jesus; as he foretold would happen.
Despite all the decorations and signs of celebration, Advent should always be considered as a time of reflection of our life and faith, when we can start to put right the wrongs so that we can truly celebrate the real meaning of Christmas, and make ourselves ready for the future, whatever that may hold for us. I pray that we will use this time to reflect, whether we are dressed as a Pantomime Dame or in any other way!
With God’s peace and blessing through Advent.