When Jesus was born there was great excitement at what it might mean for the future among both the poor (shepherds) and the rich (wise men). However those already in power were either in a panic at the idea of a rival (King Herod, although he was only a puppet), or simply unaware that there could possibly be any threat to their military might, world-wide economic power and brutal suppression of subject peoples (Caesar).
Despite the celebrations at the time, nothing much happened for thirty years. We don’t know what became of the shepherds or wise men. There was a different King Herod and a different Roman Emperor when the boy born to be King was finally accorded the royal title “King of the Jews”. That was the charge on which Jesus was executed, but it ended up being the most enormous understatement: he rose from the dead three days later as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. And millions of people world-wide still celebrate his birth, live by the power of his death and resurrection and look for his return 2,000 years later.
So perhaps there is some similarity between a General Election and Christmas? Let’s thank God that in our country we have the freedom to choose, vote for and criticise our governments. May we use it wisely, for the common good. But whatever the outcome of the Election, the bigger choice that each one of us must make is: Who is the real ruler, the King, the driving force, of my life?
May you all have a truly happy Christmas and a peaceful 2020.