“For God is not a God of disorder but of peace.”
1 Corinthians 14:33
Picture the scene…an array of baubles, twinkling lights and festive adornments are brought from their hiding place. The bare tree stands proudly in the corner, waiting for its ‘make-over’ and two eager, excited children are desperate to bring about the festive transformation. I could go on to tell you how the children add their favourite decorations, sparkling tinsel, paper doily angels and garlands of coloured beads, but it would be a lie!! You see, I am a bad mother….the thought of children haphazardly attaching multi-coloured baubles, tacky homemade decorations and tinsel to our tree brings me out in a cold sweat! In our house, I decorate the tree - it has to be precise, colour themed and very ordered. In my defence, when our children were small they each had a tree in their bedroom which could be decorated with as many garish colours and homemade Pinterest decorations they could muster, just as long as they didn’t touch my tree!!
I like things to be done in a certain way, neat and ordered and the Christmas tree is no exception. I don’t cope well with chaos and mess – a place for everything and everything in its place. As I have pondered this, I’m struck that the coming of Christ, remembered at advent and reflected upon as I decorate our tree, was anything but neat and tidy. No tranquil music piped in the birthing suite, no midwife on hand to help with the delivery, no carefully written birthing-plan by Mary – it was pretty messy.
Yet, in that chaos, there was a sense of order - a genealogy, a virgin birth and the very town of birth, were all foretold by the prophets, this was not some random, haphazard occurrence. The very coming of this long promised Messiah was and is to bring order out of chaos, to bring peace to those in turmoil and a sense of direction to those in disarray.