Remember, remember the fifth of November?

October 31 2013

With Paul Donovan(Pastor)Pendennis Evangelical Church

As newcomers to Staple Hill with four children, my family is sure to be drawn this year to Bristol’s biggest family fireworks display at Downend.  Of course, what we are really commemorating at events like this though, was not a ‘fun charity evening for all the family’!  

The treason, potential mass murder and destruction, and the gory execution of the guilty over 400 years ago are things we prefer today’s entertainment to gloss over for us.  Maybe even further removed from our thoughts are why the gunpowder plot was devised and how life in England would have been different, even today, had Guy Fawkes lit the taper. 

However, the build up to another cherished celebration has begun that dwarfs bonfire night.  The shelves are filling up, the adverts are out, and no doubt your lists and plans are being made.  Whilst YouGov expects the nation to spend £386 million on bonfire night, the Financial Times has recently reported forecasts for Christmas spending at £40 billion.  

What do you remember, remember on the…25th of December?  Have the sparkling lights, the festive foods, the parties and presents actually blocked out any real consideration of the historical event that the day commemorates?  And if we do recall the baby in Bethlehem, do we go any further and inquire about his significance?  Who was that baby?  Why has his birth (and indeed his life, death and resurrection) been remembered across the nations for over 2000 years?  What was so special about him?  How did his life change history?  Does his life have relevance for today and for me?  

Myself, and everyone at Pendennis Evangelical Church wish you a safe and enjoyable bonfire night.  We hope too that as you prepare for and celebrate Christmas you will be drawn to contemplate the real meaning and significance of that wondrous first Christ-mas day.  The exuberant burst of festivities will fade like the fireworks but Jesus came to give that which grows brighter with everyday and lasts forever!