My head does not easily separate Christmas from Easter. Christmas – the season of giving – reflects that he came to give himself, both in life and in death, and therefore is viewed in the shadow of the cross. The open stable foreshadows the open tomb. He emerged from both of these hidden places, very much alive. So no apologies for a Christmas poem that sounds more like Easter:
Did love ever look so real? Yes, there it is in carefully crafted creation There it is in a mother's eyes when her baby is born Seeing the riches born in poverty. There is love In grandparents eagerly awaiting their children in anticipation of embracing the newborn. There is love in gifts given, in friends, in words spoken, in acts of kindness But did love ever look so real As it did on that hot hill of agony As blood fell from your broken body Weighed down willingly with my sin As you relinquished life just to bring me - and you - and all mankind who were willing to come - home for ever? Did love ever look so real As you whispered to those who killed you Father forgive them, they do not know what they do? As you promised to a dying man Today you will be with me in paradise? As you cried It is finished, that cry of love which echoes round the world, breaking the power of darkness? Did love ever look so real As you reached out your crucified arms To embrace the world? Did love ever look so real as Jesus?