Faith and Reflection at Christmas: Our Homeless King

Faith and Reflection at Christmas: Our Homeless King
The Reverend Pam Seale | 2019 - October to December | United Kingdom
Pam reminds us why, in the very busy build-up towards our Christmas celebrations, we should not forget the homeless.

The Picture above is a modern one of Jesus depicted as a homeless person asleep on a park bench. This amazing work is by Canadian sculptor Tim Schmalz, which is a 7ft bronze cast, depicting Christ hidden beneath a blanket and his identity only signified by the nail holes in his feet, reminding us that it could be any person in any of our towns but for these wounds.

I’ve heard people say it’s a reminder of the reality and sadness of homelessness existing in the 21st century, which of course is quite right.  But I am also drawn to three clear bible passages: the first, in Luke 2:7, where it is said that when Joseph and Mary arrived in Bethlehem before Jesus was born, “there was no guest room available for them.” He was therefore laid in a manger - a manger being simply a feeding trough used for animals, suggesting to us that our King of Salvation was indeed born into no home.

The second passage is from Matthew 25, cautioning us to show hospitality to the needy or “the least of these.Jesus is challenging us to address social injustice in the sense that it is about caring for the needy - all who are needy. Of course, the Old Testament prophets strenuously reminded communities to care of widows, aliens, orphans and those in distress. But none took the steps that Jesus did. Jesus identified himself with the homeless and all others in terrible need.

The third passage is Luke 9:58 in which Jesus drawing close to his crucifixion and his humanly existence on earth, to which Jesus says to a man who is asking to follow Him, “The Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head” (Luke 9:58)  - unlike the foxes and birds that can seek shelter in their dens and nests to rest.

There is absolutely no excuse for us to be indifferent to the homeless and indeed the poor at this time of year, so, as we soldier into this busy period to celebrate our Lord’s birthday, please support the many charities in and around our local communities that seek to help our homeless and poor. Please be mindful of the candid saying ‘But for the Grace of God go I from Corinthians 15:10 “But what I am now, I am through the grace of God and the grace which was given to me has not been wasted. Indeed, I have worked harder than all the others, not I but the Grace of God which is with me.

At the heart of Christmas is the love of Jesus, a love for all of mankind. A love for you! I do pray that our Lord will have mercy on us and that you will receive God’s blessing and Grace this Christmas.