A little while,
And then the day was slipping down behind
The dark, and clung there, like a crystal drop…
O, was there here some haste
That pushed the light more hurriedly, as if
This were an ending era, and the last
Of days? …
Then suddenly, the road
Was turning, and ahead, some clustered roofs…
And called to her: “Mary. It is here.
This is Bethlehem.
So now he pulled the bridle on a path
Well worn, ahead of him.
…A fire and feel that there were others near.
A kind of courtyard, square, but with a roof
Around the edges, and a gate to close…
Joseph’s eyes were hopeful as he stood
To wait an answer. Then he heard them say,
There was no room for them within the inn.
These lines speak of hope and promise, new beginnings and graces. But, they also speak of the Cross. Where and how do you see both? Consider how the Cross is implicit from the moment of Mary’s annunciation to the moment of Golgotha. How is it at the heart of the Christmas story – in its joys and its deprivations? How have your crosses also produced joy? Journal your thoughts. What do you make of the words, “…as if this were an ending era, and the last of days?”
(Excerpted from A Woman Wrapped in Silence By John W. Lynch)