Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Son of God, Son of Man... Sudden Insight.

Hello dear Water's Edge team!

First, a quick reminder that we will NOT be holding services at Water's Edge this Sunday, December 25, 2011. On that Christmas Sunday, please consider attending the 9:30am or 11 am service in the main sanctuary. We'll return to the Cove on New Year's Day, January 1, 2012, which is also a special day in church history: Epiphany.

We will be reading about Jesus' baptism, the moment when his parents realized the magnitude of his being. Jesus was not only their son, but the Son of God and the Son of Man. All the great joys related to "their" baby boy would be shared with the world. And they realized this.

For we mere mortals, this is often of time of recommitment, refreshment and a new start. You will have that opportunity as we will be sharing the history of, and reading, the UMC covenant prayer in a renewal service. Check it out on page #607 in your Methodist Hymnal.

I would also like to remind you that (the inmates are running the assylum) the Water's Edge team is leading the Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at 11pm. Chris and the band will play in the santuary, Rev. Molly will share the homily, and several of your W.E. faithful will deliver readings of scripture and Christmas-related poems.

One of the favorites this time of year, John Bell's "Cloth for the Cradle," is pasted below. (Click on the highlighted link to hear an audio version from a Mission Viejo church). We won't be reading it at 11pm on Christmas Eve, so I thought I'd share it with you here, for good measure, as it sets my heart at ease.
This is such a busy time of year, with shopping and shipping to be done, worries about finances, health, travel, family gatherings, crazy relatives... if there is one thing I'd like to close with, it's this: please take care of yourself. Take time to sit in silence, whether you listen to Christmas carols, watch the blinking Christmas lights, or just soak in the silence and the dark, take some time to listen for God. In this busy, exciting, expectant time of year, God leans in close to us, through the creche and baby Jesus. We have but to reach out and take his tiny hand to feel whole again.

See you on Christmas Eve!

Cloth for the Cradle- John Bell

When the world was dark
and the city was quiet,
you came.

You crept in beside us.
And no one knew.

Only the few who dared to believe
that God might do something different.

Will you do the same this Christmas, Lord?

Will you come into the darkness of tonight's world;
not the friendly darkness
as when sleep rescues us from tiredness,
but the fearful darkness, in which people have stopped believing
that war will end
or that food will come
or that a government will change
or that the Church cares?

Will you come into that darkness
and do something different
to save your people from death and despair?

Will you come into the quietness of this town,
not the friendly quietness
as when lovers hold hands,
but the fearful silence when the phone has not rung
the letter has not come,
the friendly voice no longer speaks,
the doctor's face says it all?

Will you come into that darkness,
and do something different,
not to distract, but to embrace your people?

And will you come into the dark corners
and the quiet places of our lives?

We ask this not because we are guilt-ridden
or want to be,
but because the fullness our lives long for
depends upon us being as open and vulnerable to you
as you were to us, when you came,
wearing no more than diapers,
and trusting human hands
to hold their maker.

Will you come into our lives,
if we open them to you
and do something different?

When the world was dark
and the city was quiet
you came.
You crept in beside us.

Do the same this Christmas, Lord.
Do the same this Christmas.


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