What’s the longest journey you’ve ever made? (Ask for examples.)
Here’s the furthest I’ve ever been. Does anyone recognise this? The tall building is called the CN Tower. It’s Toronto, in Canada. I went there in 1995. Can anyone guess how far it is from London?
Here’s the answer, courtesy of www.wolframalpha.com.
And here’s the second furthest I’ve ever been. Does anyone know where this is? It’s Tel Aviv in Israel. I flew there in 1989, and travelled all over Israel/Palestine. Do you know how far it is from London to Tel Aviv?
Here’s the answer, again courtesy of www.wolframalpha.com.
But what about the Christmas story? There’s a lot of travelling in that. How far was Mary and Joseph’s journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem?
This is how far. Not much fun walking, or on a donkey.
The shepherds were out in fields near by, so they didn’t come very far.
Let’s say, just this far, at least if you go by the traditional site of the Shepherds’ Fields in the Holy Land.
But what about the Magi (Wise Men)? They could have come from modern-day Iraq or Iran. Let’s take Iran, as it’s further. How far would they have travelled to search for Jesus if their journey was from Tehran to Bethlehem?
This is the answer – again thanks to www.wolframalpha.com.
But who took the longest journey of all? Wasn’t it Jesus, coming from heaven to earth?
We can’t measure that. You see, the Christmas story is not first of all about people searching for Jesus. Before all that, it’s about God searching for us, by Jesus coming the amazing distance from heaven to earth.
You might be travelling for Christmas, to see family members. But no-one has travelled further than Jesus. He has come searching for each one of us. He has come to invite every one of us to say ‘yes’ to his love and then to follow him.