Over the past week we have journeyed with the holy family whose story is a story of the re-creation of the universe in that Christ’s coming changes the way we understand ourselves, each other, the Creator, and the created world around us.
As it is in all families, their story is one of unexpected journeys,
~ of adapting to unforeseen circumstances,
~ of travelling together (and sometimes apart),
~ of making room for people who pop in (often at the most inconvenient times – but more on that over the next two weeks),
~ of making home for characters who come from the strangest places but want or need to stay (yes, I’m talking about the donkey),
~ of the profound influence that we have through blood and through presence; an impact that does not seem as limited by time and distance as we sometimes feel or imagine,
~ of how complicated it can be making sense day by day by day of who we are and whose we are and where we fit in and outside of the the family order.
Above all, their story is the story of a God who chooses to be relational, though that’s messy and hard and risky and, indeed, as we read further in the Gospels we see teenage Jesus causing his parents anguish at the temple, Joseph disappearing from the story, Mary pushing her son into the limelight when it’s not yet time, Jesus probably causing some offence to his siblings when he identified his followers as his brothers ….
So I invite you, over the course of this weekend, to pray for the family of your heart – especially if some of those relationships are messy or hard or risky right now – as you respond in faith to a grace-filled invitation
into an ever extending family
formed by the Father’s own hand,
liberated by the love of the Son,
and held together by the Spirit of Truth who testifies to our belonging.