I wonder what the Christmas of 2022 will be known for? Undoubtedly recent years have been overshadowed by the global pandemic as families were encouraged not to meet together or if they did just for a day or two.
But this year, with the horrors of the pandemic seemingly behind us, what now?
For me, I guess, I can't help but perhaps think about strikes.
It's everywhere, whether that's horrendous airstrikes in Ukraine or service strikes in the UK as people grapple to keep their pay in line with what seems to be the ever increasing inflation, which affects us all, even an online estate agent has taken up the brand of being known as Strike
Yet at this Christmas I'm reminded of a different kind of strike. Not one of violence, not even one of wanting equality with others, but a strike at the heart of humanity which has changed everthing and continues to do so.
We're reminded at this time of year of the story of Christmas. God who dwelt and lived among His creation, in and through his Son Jesus.
The strike of God touching His creation wasn't through violence or hatred and it wasn't because of anger or resentment but it was a strike of love in a child born into poverty, into a violent and broken world. A child that grew to be a man who wasn't a stranger to rejection or heartache or loss and yet He continued to give of Himself to show a world another way.
That despite the constant strikes of hurt, pain, loss, and rejection He showed and demonstrated love, peace, a sense of belonging, and forgiveness.
Jesus called it a new Kingdom, different to the dominion of Rome, and Jesus expressed that his Kingdom would last forever and that there would be no stopping it.
A Kingdom where all would be welcomed but not all would believe. A Kingdom that would experience forgiveness, love, and acceptance.
At Oasis, we set out to represent that Kingdom in everything we do here every day.
Despite whatever strikes have occurred in peoples lives, that they will find a place here where they are welcomed, a place where they can find peace, a place where they are shown love, and a place to find forgiveness.
But this place isn't just confined to the walls of Oasis because His Kingdom is not built around walls but around lives.
And so may you too, find once more, at this time of year the strike of God's love in your heart, that you will believe, and that you will represent and show His Kingdom wherever you are.
Thank you for all your love and support
Grace and Peace
A Christmas message from our Oasis family