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Baptist Church

1st of December 2010

In all honesty, hand on heart, I can say I don’t like to be known. I refrained from using the word ‘celebrity’ or ‘to be famous’ because that would just sound crass. Over the last few weeks people have been coming up to me saying “saw you in the papers” or “nice photo in Chipp News” (thanks go to Terry Simmonds for that, just remember I know where you live) and I have been genuinely embarrassed, mostly in conceit at the numerical state of my jaw but also because I have felt uncomfortable. Why, I hear you ask, isn’t that what everyone craves? Isn’t that how our society works, that the sole aim for any human being is to be noticed, to be recognized, to be famous just for being famous? That may well be the case but I don’t feel that way and I am convinced many of you feel as I do.
What we all really want, what drives us to crave attention, is the need to be appreciated for who we are and ultimately loved for that reason as well. Not for what we can do. Not for how attractive we are. Not for the letters after our names and not for the size of our bank balance or number of bedrooms in our house. It is for who we are that we want to be prized.
The Good News message at Christmas is about exactly that. Not just that ‘God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son’ but that he chose in no uncertain terms to be like us. He came not with whistles and bells. He didn’t come in pomp and circumstance. He did not appear with fanfare and national celebration. You did not see him on X Factor or Big Brother. He didn’t have a camera crew following every twist and turn of his life exposing the family quirks. He came quietly with little fuss.
Well, that is not exactly true is it? Angels, shepherds, wise men bearing gifts and trouble with the authorities. All of these, on their own, would have caused a little stir but altogether there must have been a bit of a do! Maybe it is not about being known, being famous or a celebrity that is the problem but WHY we are! For the start of his life it was not easy for Jesus because once the noise had died down he had to flee for his life. Not the normal response to celebrity. In the end he was famous for all the right reasons. Humility, forgiveness, service and love. Now that’s what I think is worth being famous for.
Love Jason, The Man in the Manse

Church News
We celebrated the 173rd anniversary of our church building in October so together with the exciting time of Jason’s Ordination Service, it was a great month in our church.
The time is fast approaching for the opening of our Christmas Tree Festival on 5 December and we are looking forward to seeing you all there. Unfortunately, our Christmas lunch has had to be cancelled this year but the 15 January lunch will be as usual and if you would like to join us, please contact Brenda on 01923 269574 to book your place. There will be a report of our November Family Beetle Evening and other happenings in the next issue.
Please see the diary for our Christmas services. We especially invite you to our Family Carol service at 3pm on 19 December with mince pies and refreshments afterwards! You can browse among the Christmas Trees beforehand until 2.30pm.
The Baptist Church family wish you all a very happy and blessed Christmas.

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