Recently, at a Christmas do, some friends of ours gave me this present:
If you have never seen one before you may be wondering what it is. I certainly was. It had started its life as a strip, looking a bit like a paper garland. Then our friend opened it out and stuck the edges together to make this 3D object.
Any guesses yet? Some sort of artistic paper sculpture?
Let me rotate it (to save you turning your screen upside down).
Does this help? Is it some sort of paper vase (not very practical admittedly). How about if I turn it on its side?
Perhaps it’s some sort of large paper shuttlecock or missile? I discovered you can open it out by pulling together one of the ends.
Maybe it’s some sort of paper fruit bowl? Not very stable though. I had no other ideas so our friends told us. It’s a hat!
It only really becomes a hat when you pull it onto your head. Until that moment it becomes a curious object.
It’s the same with the Christian faith. It only really comes to life when you put it on, when you start to live it. It’s not about adopting a religion or following rules or even going to church! It’s about entering into a relationship with God. You may have lots of other ideas about it until that moment when you take a step of faith you won’t experience it in all its fullness.
Be blessed, be a blessing.
Today is my eviction anniversary*. 48 years ago I was unceremoniously evicted from the comforting, nurturing, nourishing place I had spent the first 9 months of my existence into a cold, bright, noisy environment that I had never imagined existed. I don’t think I wanted to leave the womb-warmth – which may explain why most babies start crying soon after they emerge.
But so much has happened for me since that I am rather glad that I was evicted (and I am sure my Mum was!). It may have been somewhat traumatic at the time (for me and my mother) but that trauma has been followed by growth, learning, friendship, love, companionship, excitement, sadness, distress, struggles and so much more. I have gone from the relative comfort of monochrome existence to the astonishing experience of beyond-high-definition multi-coloured life with more pixels than you can imagine and billions of colours and shades.
How often is that true for us? We like our comfort zones, our security blankets, our safety. Change threatens that security and we cannot be sure that it will be better so we often prefer to stay where we are than risk an unknown future. Yet, there is so much more to experience of life. If we stay in the womb we won’t experience all of that.
Be blessed, be a blessing
*Thank you to so many of you for your birthday greetings, that means a lot to me.