I make no apology for writing this post in advance. Christmas Day for us is likely to be busy with church, presents, phoning family and somehow roasting a turkey without leaving the giblets inside (in a plastic bag!). I suppose my starting point is the idea that Jesus is the Light of the World and seeing where my thoughts take me.

It would not be true for me to say that I think that all religions are the same. I do not accept that most, if not all, differences between religions are largely cultural or historical. There are differences in belief about the meaning of life, death, suffering and joy; as well as differences in ideas about the nature of the universe and God’s relationship to it.

To be sure there are virtues and values which many humans share and which are common to many people of faith. While I believe that God’s light, his truth, wisdom and love, is uniquely revealed in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, I also believe that that light cannot be confined or restricted by us. In other words, the light of Christ shines in some unexpected places and unexpected people. God surprises us with glimpses of heaven and that may include people we do not expect.

If Jesus is the light of the world, what is a Christian? Well, any definition involves a decision to follow him, to trust him, to accept him as the Son of God, God’s light – there are different ways of putting it – but you could say that a Christian is someone who is drawn to and keeps going back to the light that is Jesus.

Or to put it another way: perhaps a Christian is someone who has been in Jesus’ light so that they may glow in he dark.

May the Light of Christ shine in your life this Christmas.