This post was contributed by Kevin Schrapel.
Together they stood, mobiles in hand, pondering the COVID square thingy on the door.
The farmer in his battered, grease-stained old Akubra glanced at the bloke next to him and thought, “Strange get up … oh well, guess it is Christmas”.
In the friendly, down-to-earth manner for which farmers are generally known, he turned to the stranger: “Been a bit of a year, hey?”
The stranger smiled: “It certainly has”.
The farmer examined his toil-roughened hand and, with a sideways glance at the stranger, continued.
“It’s good things have loosened up a bit so families can get together for Christmas.
“Might almost call it a bit of a miracle.”
The stranger turned and, with a grin and a raised eyebrow, replied, “I think you could”.
They waved their phones at the magic square.
A toothy grin appeared under the greasy hat: “Well, mate, have a happy Christmas”.
The reply filled with warmth came back “And a time of blessing to you too, my friend”.
The stranger watched his new friend hurry off, filling his shopping trolley.
“My friend of calloused hands, it has been a bit of a year,” he thought.
“If you could only realise and accept why I was born as a human baby, in a manger.
“I put aside my position in heaven as the son of God so I could show that I do understand the pain, the heartache, the suffering, the immeasurable hurt of rejection, the heart-breaking desire to be loved, the pain and suffering of a body under stress.
“More than that, I came and made the way for all people to have the full life my father wants for them.
“I suffered and died on that cross so you all could experience the joy of knowing my father’s love, not only at Christmas, but all year – every year.”
Jesus makes this offer of peace and joy to you.
All you need do is accept that what he says about his love and forgiveness is genuine.
Not sure if it is for you?
Try talking to him about your concerns.
Who knows what this Christmas – and the years ahead – might bring?
Praying that all will have a Jesus-filled and blessed Christmas.