And unlike the well-meaning attempt by one of the Police Forces to do something or other with the poem which deals with night before Christmas there's no stressing out or drink or sexual nastiness and blinking awful verse.
Here we are - just a week away from the nativity of the blessed Babe and I have just two Christingle services left. Seems like weeks since I did the first Christingle of the Advent season of the season (the reason being that it was weeks ago!) and yet here we are - glowsticks at the ready and virtual Christingle loaded and good to go. . . And I'm still excited!
There are still carol services to be done (loads of them) and candles to light (that's why we call them candlelit) and mince pies and mulled wine and Communion and ... Well, you know ... Loads of stuff.
There's still loads of time for people to tell me how, 'This must be your busy time!' Ironically, all the time is my busy time (and you thought I just worked one day a week) and the funerals crowd in as grief and Christmas trees clash and fight for the number one slot. There's still people who need communion at home and still more who need a listening ear and a gentle touch amidst the sea of life's problems.
Yes, it must be 'my busy time' - but that's true of every day that God gives me, because that's the nature of the calling (and the man) - so here's a gentle plea:
i. Please pray for those who daily toil is situated within the walls of God's house.
ii. Please don't assume that everything is squared away and sorted - use your eyes and head as see if you can offer assistance.
iii. If it looks like it's going wrong then, having discerned it, get stuck in and resolve it.
iv. Please don't tell your friendly dogcollar that you don't need to come to church on Christmas Day because you've already been if you went on Christmas Eve! Perhaps that should be 'Don't tell me' - but the reality is that Christmas Day is, along with Easter, one of the most important 'red letter' days in the Church's calendar.
v. Did I mention pray?
Have wonderful final week of Advent - our tree goes up this weekend and Christmas will be welcomed in to our home (the twelve days eagerly awaited and the journeying Magi awaited) - May Christmas be a blessing as we celebrate Jesus, God's wonderful Christmas presence.