Sunday, December 23, 2007

Here it is...the spiritual bit...


God came down
Brushing the savannah with His Midas touch
Infusing the ocean with His complexity
Whispering His way into the sub-atomic spaces.

The universe sang with His joy
Each cell and quasar vibrating at His ecstatic frequency.

Still, not enough, said God; they do not see
Me, neither do they hear my voice.

So God came down
Breathing comfort and promise into the fallen and the distressed
Choosing those without a voice to speak His words
Naming those without respect to be His face.

The earth rumbled with the sound of their voices
Their stories spoke the longings of countless hearts.

Still, not enough, said God; they do not hear
Me, neither do they know my heart.

And God came down
Into the darkness and silence of a watery womb
Into the monotony of dusty roads and endless questions
Into the agony of death and the pain of rejection.

Hard hearts were melted by a single touch, lives changed
At the moment they knew themselves known.

Now they saw
Now they heard
Now they knew His heart

And God said, it is finished.
TAW Christmas 2007
Happy Christmas, all.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Tinsel Overdrive

I have gone into pre-Christmas frantic mode. Today is the first day of the best of two weeks off. well, I say 'off', but what with family and church wardening duties I think I get about half an hour to myself!

Anyway, around this time of year I start setting myself ridiculous tasks, often unnecessary tinsel froth or totally unconnected to Christmas yet somehow taking on the 25th December deadline. By Christmas Day all shall be cleaned, including those items that never normally get done (the silver, the tops of picture rails, that kind of thing); all shall be tidy (pretty much an impossible task once the kids have broken up from school - and Richard, for that matter); all jobs shall be finished (e.g. the painting of walls, the sanding of furniture, the outstanding projects from work...none of these are remotely related to Christmas, but have somehow adopted the deadline artificially).

So it was that I found myself in Tesco's well before 9am this morning, and have continued at pretty much top speed until now. Just a shedload of cooking to do now. If I get through that I might hang some baubles up in the dining room, for good measure.

Now, where did I put that sandpaper...?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Leaving on a jet plane


Scene: check-in at the Easyjet desk at an airport near you. A nervous-looking older gentleman dressed in long red silk robes is carrying a small bag to the front of the queue. He is greeted by a weary young woman dressed unflatteringly in orange. Her badge informs us that her name is Stella.
Stella: Good morning Sir can you tell me your destination please?
Man: I'm not entirely sure. I set off in a westerly direction, pretty easy really since I originate from the East. But then there was rather a lot of cloud cover, and I got a bit disorientated. I think I need to head east again now.
Stella: That would be anywhere but Edinburgh then.
Man: Perfect. Whichever flight takes me the furthest.
Stella: Can I check your passport please? (He hands it over) That's fine Sir. Nice beard, you've grown it even longer since that photo.
Man: Yes, the beard seems to go with the job.
Stella: What do you do?
Man: I'm a sage.
Stella: A what, Sir?
Man: A sage.
Stella: I'm sorry, I thought that was a herb.
Man: No, no. It's a thinker, a generally wise person (Stella looks blank). A philosopher. A guru. (still blank). An astronomer. A star-gazer.
Stella. Oooh. I'm Sagittarius myself. Is it just yourself travelling today? I seem to have you down for three seats.
Man: That's a common misconception. Because of the three gifts. People always assume there are three of me. (Stella looks somewhat disbelieving). Oh, all right. The other two went skiing instead.
Stella: So...did you pack that bag yourself, Sir?
Man: Oh, yes.
Stella (she reels off): Can you confirm that you have no knivessharpimplementsaerosolsorgascylinders?
Man: Yes. I mean, no, I don't.
Stella: And that you are not carrying any liquids onto the plane, other than verified medicines for the flight?
Man: Er...I do have a bottle of myrrh.
Stella: And that's a medicine, is it, Sir?
Man: In a manner of speaking. It's for embalming. Dead bodies.
Stella: (Pause...) ...Are you planning a terminal event whilst on board, Sir?
Man: No, no...it's just that it comes as part of a set. A gift set, you see. Along with the gold. And the frankincense.
Stella: Nice. Is that from the Body Shop?
Man: Not exactly. Look, it's very important. I don't want to risk it to the hold. And I don't have time to wait in baggage reclaim. I'm running late, what with the cloud cover and the breakdown on the motorway. I never knew it was possible for a camel to have a blow-out in the fast lane.
Stella: Well, I don't know. I don't think they'll let you, but you could try putting it in one of those see-through wallet things. You'll have to pay duty on the gold though.
Man: Fine, fine.
Stella: And you're going to have to take them robes off to get through security. Do you have anything underneath them?
Man: Of course I do. It is December, and I am a wise man, you know.
Stella: Pardon me Sir, I was just asking.
Man: Not at all. Just one more thing - would it be possible for me to get a seat by the window? I'd like to keep an eye on that star...