A Night like no other - A Meditation on the Eve of Christmas
The gifts are all wrapped - well, most of them
prepared for the assault of tiny fingers (and not so tiny);
the shops are closed - well, most of them
preparing for the onslaught of the sales;
the children are asleep - well, most of them
awaiting what the morning will bring,
and leaving the parents wondering when that morning will begin.
Our attempts to placate the insistent and the persistent,
our expressions of affection and gratitude,
our tokens of love,
are presented and await the desired response.
It is Christmas Eve - the night before the morning after
and the air is thickening with anticipation;
it is a night like no other.
What's he bringing you?
You'd better be good, or he won't come!
I hope we've not forgotten anyone!
In a draughty shed,
a young girl tries to feed and comfort her Son,
only a few hours old.
Behind her, her fiancé tries to find enough clean straw
to line the feeding trough that will double as a cot
for tonight at least.
Outside the early morning sounds of the city clamour to be heard
soon the light will be here, the day will have come.
No, the Light has already come.
The One Who caused the light,
Who brings the light,
Who is The Light,
is there in the stable
in the arms of a teenage mother.
The Day has already come;
that for which so many had hoped,
and prayed has arrived.
The Gift that all need,
but so few want,
is there, gift-wrapped in swaddling cloths,
but still waiting for a tree.
The pleading of the insistent and persistent has been heard by the Father
their needs have been met;
the greatest expression of affection and token of love is there,
awaiting eager hands to grasp it and claim it and own it,
for their name is there, written in the palms of His hands.
And the Father is waiting to see the look on our faces.
Copyright © John L Simms 1994