Nature and Faith in Images and Words

The Shadow



Long time ago in Bethlehem so the holy Bible say

Mary’s boy child Jesus Christ was born on Christmas Day. 

A lovely song we know so well, but does it make you wonder-  

If there was far more truth than this, and maybe we should ponder 

About poor Mary and the things she could’ve seen that night, 

That made her heart uneasy, that didn’t seem quite right? 

As she lay the baby down upon that rough old manger,

Did she see its legs had crossed, was that a sign of danger?

Then later on as Jesus grew into a fine young lad,

And learned to fashion wood beside his ageing dad.  

Did Mary ever stop and stare upon the things he made? 

Perhaps a stool or table, or a handle for a spade? 

Did she ever marvel at his affinity with wood?

Were the alarm bells ringing, had she understood? 

A carpenter he is right now, but would he always be, 

The words that kept repeating, was simply these, “a tree.” 

The years went by so quickly, Jesus was now a man, 

He began a ministry, said this was the Father’s plan. 

Crowds seem to follow him no matter where he went, 

So he stepped into a boat that James and John had lent. 

As they launched off from the shore out across the lake, 

Did Mary see a future sight that made her poor heart break?

 For as the boat went further out she felt a sense of loss, 

Was it a coincidence that the mast had formed a cross? 

A few months on the crowd had turned into an angry mob, 

The sight that Mary looked on just made her sob and sob. 

 There was a cross before her, in fact not one but three. 

Her son was on the middle one yet no one heard her plea. 

She heard him cry for water, but vinegar they gave, 

She saw him hang and die there, and no one came to save.  

Then all those signs that she had seen throughout his life on earth

Made sense to her, and she could trace them from his birth. 

We celebrate at Christmas the coming of God’s son; 

At Easter time we’re thankful for all that he has done. 

But stoop into the stable; look at the manger bare,  

There is a shadow of a cross that you can make out there. 

For even though we celebrate, with joy that well loved story,

We can’t ignore the fact that when he left his glory - 

He knew what he was coming to, what price he’d have to pay. 

Make sure that you remember him this year on Christmas day.