The Rev Heather Macdonald
December 2002

Bridges are a topic of conversation in Stokes Valley at the moment. How many times have we gone to drive somewhere outside the Valley and been frustrated by the long round about trip to get to a bridge? A bridge at the entrance to SV would save so much time and petrol. There used to be a bridge - imagine being able to walk across and catch the train. A bridge would be an important asset to this community. A bridge is important.

Christmas is getting closer - only so many more sleeps. Christmas is the time when we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Son of God, coming to be and live with us here on earth. Jesus is the ultimate bridge - a bridge which brought us into right relationship with God. Jesus tells us, ‘I am the Way, the Truth and the Life and no one comes to the Father but through me’. Couldn’t this be a description of a bridge? Just as there is no way over the Hutt River but by a bridge, so to Jesus is the way to God. As we come to this realisation in our own lives, then we can step in and be bridges for others to find their way back to Jesus -and to God.

What can we be doing to strengthen and reinforce our relationship with Jesus? And what can we be doing to be a ‘bridge’ for others? We can find ourselves really busy - doing the rounds of end of year ‘dos’, Christmas shopping, planning holidays and the rest. In the middle of this - where do we find time to look to the ‘reason for the season’ - Jesus. We can have this mad rush to celebrate a birthday - with only a nodding acknowledgement to Jesus - whose birthday it is.

I invite you to take some time out in the busyness to spend time with Jesus. Take time to think about what we are doing - and in the grand scheme of things whether it is important. A kind word or deed to someone along the way will last longer than dealing with a ‘maxed-out’ credit card and pre & post-Christmas stress. Spend some time playing with the children, singing some carols, and talking to the family and neighbours. Stress less - and have a wonderful Christmas.

May Jesus the bridge, continue to show us all, how to be bridges for others. And may the peace of Christmas be in all your homes this season.


PS - check out the Christmas services in a Church near you this Christmas.