As Christmas approaches there’s a plethora of Christmas stories bought to our attention. Books to buy, movies to see; mostly focussing on family togetherness, holiday fun, the generosity of the human spirit; all great things, but often skirting around the central story of Christmas.I recently heard a speaker from the Dickens Society talking about the stories which Charles Dickens wrote about Christmas; A Christmas Carol, The Chimes, The Cricket on the Hearth, to name a few. A Christmas Carol, perhaps the most well-known, has been read and re-read, modernised, seen on stage, screen and DVD. I wonder if it’s better known and paid more attention than the real story of Christmas – the birth of the Saviour of the world.
Could there be a more compelling, moving, joyous story than that of Jesus’s birth? Especially when we know that it’s a never ending story, a life-giving and life-changing one for millions upon millions of people.
There are many beautiful aspects of the Christmas story which can be explored and applied in novels, movies, poems, pageants, plays and song. Themes of forgiveness, joy, grace, acceptance, love, reconciliation, peace can be brought to our attention in beautiful, challenging and moving ways. These are the themes I want to write about in all my novels, in the hope that a reader will be challenged to seek God.
However, Christmas gives a special opportunity to speak to hearts and minds that at other times of the year might be quite closed to these ideas. Many hundreds of people will sit at a Carol’s night in a park and sing songs about the baby Jesus, the Saviour of the World; people who may never talk of such things in their everyday life. People who don’t usually go to church will attend a Christmas service and hear the Biblical story, or watch a Christmas pageant, or gaze on the nativity scene. No doubt God’s spirit can do wonderful things with such an opportunity.
I love this quote from Dicken’s Christmas Carol. “I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present and the Future. The spirit of all three shall strive with me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach.”
How wonderful if more people could really honour the Christmas story – the coming of Christ to a broken world – all year, and allow His spirit to bring new life to them all year round. I pray this Christmas, the central truth of His story will begin in the hearts of many who have not really heard it before.
Carol's novels are historical fiction, based on her family ancestry in Australia, dating back to the First Fleet.
You can find Carol on her website www.carolpreston.com.au
Or on her FB author page www.facebook.com/writingtoreach
Or see her books on www.amazon.com/author/carolpreston