The atmosphere was building as we awaited the arrival of a man in white carrying a fire torch. He arrived escorted by police vans and a bunch of enthusiastic samsung employees, who’s aim was to quite clearly promote their company through the giving away of merchandise.
Many of the escorting trucks and police bikers seemed to arrive about 40 minutes before the torchearer, but nonetheless, they arrived in style. Some were smiley as they interacted with the crowd and enjoyed the occasion, whilst some simply looked as though they had arrived at a violent crime scene involving flags and human faces!
I was amazed at how many people turned out to see a torch being carried through the streets. When I ran down the street with my battery powered, Maglite, ST21 D’ Cell LED torch, it didn’t have quite the same appeal. Had I stolen it from Wilkinsons, I may have even been escorted by police. But I didn’t feel the fuss was necessary.
Anyway, that’s not true.
The torchbearer eventually arrived with a smile on his face and the torch held high. He ran past us and photo’s were taken.
That was it. Crowds dispersed. Samsung employees had found new people to be smiley around and headed to Cheltenham Racecourse where the celebrations would continue.
Now I’m aware that I’m starting to sound a little sarcy and cynical about the whole event, but if i’m honest, I did enjoy it. I recognise that it’s exciting to see something that we will only ever celebrate once in our lifetime.
It struck me that as I stood amongst the crowd, that this kind of celebration isn’t anything new. I’ve read of a celebration just like this, that happened thousands of years ago. People crowded the streets awaiting for someone to arrive. But this person wasn’t dressed for attention, he didn’t arrive in style and he only had 2 friends and a donkey to escort him. When he arrived, the people in the city were stirred up, but asked ‘Who is this?’.
The crowds replied, ‘This is Jesus’ – They waved palm branches instead of flags, they laid their coats on the floor as a sign of respect. THIS is Jesus Christ – A man who was about to be nailed to a cross, suffering in pain, to reconnect mankind with God.
Many of the olympic torchbearers have been chosen in recognition of their service to the community or country. They deserve recognition and so does Jesus who suffered on our behalf.
It’s interesting that Jesus said, ‘I am the light of the world’ – Jesus comes to bring excitement, colour and flavour to our lives. He comes to give life in all it’s fullness. This isn’t a ‘once in a lifetime opportunity’ to celebrate – this causes for DAILY celebration!
Jesus who invites us to a bigger celebration than we have ever known. A celebration that is out of this world, that lasts for eternity. All we need to do, is recognise what he did on the cross.
Now that celebration sounds far more exciting. I’d love to share more with you if you are interested. Please ask.
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