I hate the saying “It’s easier to ask forgiveness than permission.”
And yet… I’m going to do that.
If F. W. Boreham was alive, by all means, I would ask. “Could I please, please, please, put your introduction to My Christmas Book on my blog? I promise to give you credit and direct people to where they can buy the book. It’s just so relevant to today.”
But he died in 1959, before I was even born.
I wish I could remember how I stumbled across Boreham. I read one of his books earlier this year — A Bunch of Everlastings.
Then I did that other thing that I hate for people to do. I bought something for myself that was on my Christmas wishlist. I bought a second Boreham book — My Christmas Book: A Handful of Myrrh, Aloes and Cassia.
I was going to wait for Advent to start reading it — but I couldn’t. Since reading the intro about a week ago, his hope-filled words have been running through my mind.
From Boreham’s “My Christmas Book”:
By Way of Introduction
A Child is Born! That is Forever and Forever
The Message of Christmas.
A Child is born! In the early days of the nineteenth century, men were following with bated breath the march of Napoleon and waiting with feverish impatience for the latest news of the wars. And all the while, in their own homes, babies were being born. Just think of some of those babies. Why, in one year, lying midway between Trafalgar and Waterloo, there stole into the world a host of heroes! During that year, 1809, Mr. Gladstone was born at Liverpool; Alfred Tennyson drew his first breath at the Somersby rectory; and Oliver Wendell Holmes made his initial appearance in Massachusetts. On the very self-same day of that self-same year, Charles Darwin made his debut at Shrewsbury and Abraham Lincoln in Old Kentucky. Music was enriched by the advent of Frederick Chopin at Warsaw and Felix Mendelssohn at Hamburg.
But nobody thought of the babies. Everybody was thinking of battles. Yet, viewing that age in the truest perspective which the years enable us to command, we may well ask ourselves which of the battles of 1809 mattered more than the babies of 1809. When a wrong wants righting, or a work wants doing, or a truth wants preaching, or a continent wants opening, God sends a baby into the world to do it. This is why, long, long ago, a Babe was born at Bethlehem.
You may not agree with his list of heroes, (or the comment about “opening continents”) but you get the gist.
Hope is here. It’s born every day. An echo of the ultimate Hope born in Bethlehem.