It’s been too long! I now realise that I need to remember to be looking for what God is saying to me visually. The grace of a daily reflection whilst I was away seemed to fade, but I now realise that I need to discover the discipline of looking for the signs and symbols of the Kingdom around me.
And as I reflected on this, this image came into my mind – I used it as a background last night at one of our carol services and it spoke to me in a very profound way.
This picture by Gari Melchers is one of my favourites.
Mary is exhausted – she can barely do more than rest her head against Joseph and her arms are limp by her side.
Joseph looks worried – his hands clenched, his face set, looking downwards at his newborn son.
They are alone – just them alone in the room.
It is almost a picture of hopelessness and despair.
Where is the light coming from? Cool moonlight spills through the door, but the warm light comes from the newborn lying in a feeding trough. It illuminates Father and Mother, and both of their faces are turned towards.
It feels that this year more than ever, the valley of the shadow of death is rather crowded. So many people we know are going through difficult times. So many are exhausted like Mary or worried like Joseph.
As we approach the celebration of the Christ Mass, my prayer is that we too, who sit with Mary and Jospeh, would also see the uncreated light shining through infant eyes and know the hope that comes from Him.
The people walking in darkness have seen a great light!