December 15th, 2022

Dec 13, 2022

Image: Barbara Ryther

A Familiar Story

Every year we start the story again. We know this one! The characters are familiar, the plot twists aren’t a surprise anymore. A prophecy! A miraculous pregnancy! A star! Humble shepherds, wise visitors, evil ruler! Flee! We even know how it ends. Preaching, teaching, miracles, then fear, death, resurrection.

We’re comfortable with this story, perhaps too comfortable. It’s like an annual holiday movie that we’ve seen so many times we no longer really watch it but just let it play in the background while we bake cookies and wrap presents.

Maybe this year it’s time for fresh eyes and ears, for a newly open and waiting heart. What if we paid more attention to each part of the story as it unfolds and listened without mentally leaping ahead to the last chapter? What if we discarded what we think we know happened, and looked more deeply into the people and events?

It can be good to hear a familiar story over and over. This year, let’s find something new, be open to surprises, and let it change us.

 – Barbara Ryther