Friday, 23 December 2011

A little Christmas Story

I have been neglecting you of late (shame on me!).  To make up for it you get this Christmas story first!

The Guiding Star

When you look up at the sky at night you see that some stars are larger and brighter than others.  This is the story of a star that became known all over the world due to one extraordinary event.
            Once, a long, long time ago in the reign of King Herod there was a star in the east which had shone for many, many years.  She was old and her light was beginning to fade.  The time was coming when she would shine no more and would burn out, as all stars did.  This thought saddened her for she felt no use to anyone anymore.
            One night a voice called to her “Why are you so sad?” 
The star jumped in fright but answered in a shaky voice “Because I am too old now to give much light and I feel useless.”
The voice said “The one who made you does not think that.  In fact he has an important job for you.  A new King is soon to be born, one whose reign will never end, a saviour, the son of the true God.  Now this wonderful news is to be taken to the people on earth and God has chosen you to play your part in this.  Tonight you will give birth to a new star, a large, bright star, one which will guide shepherds and Kings to the stable in Bethlehem where God’s son is born.”
The star was amazed by all that she heard and thought that she must be dreaming.  “All my babies have been small,” she said, “not bold and bright.”
“Do not worry,” the voice reassured her, “I am a messenger of the Lord, through whom and all things are possible.  Before this night is ended you will see your light shine through your son.  He will shine brighter than any star has done before and he will be seen throughout the world, and will rest over the place where the baby Jesus lies in a manger.”
Later that night when the old star was dozing in the moonlight she was suddenly filled with a great energy.  A huge flash of light burst from her and she was dazzled by the brightly shining rays of the emerging new star.  This was her son.  Other stars turned to look at him for they had never seen one such as he.  Then angels appeared and surrounded the young star and began to softly sing.  The sweet voices grew louder, then all at once ceased.  Then the star bowed to his mother and gently moved away surrounded by the angels.  “Come,” said one, “we have much to do tonight.”
The old star watched proudly as her son departed to begin the work he was destined for.  His light did indeed fill the sky that night and for many nights to come.  The heavens were alive with music, and angels accompanied the bright star wherever he went.  News spread of the wondrous event that had taken place on earth and the old star felt privileged to have been chosen in her latter years by God, to be the mother of the guiding star.

(first published in Areopogus in December 2007)

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