Rev Max Cross, rector, Bedhampton
This Christmas in Bedhampton, we are playing a game called the Bedhampton Star. It is named after the Church of England Follow The Star Christmas campaign – and you’ll find out more about that if you use the hashtag #FollowTheStar on social media.
We are hiding posters with the #FollowTheStar logo around Bedhampton and challenging you to find them. There are small prizes and entry into a grand prize draw for those who join in. It is fun but there is a message beneath it.
We live in a world where we are bombarded with people to follow. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram all require a following and if you are look like this ‘Star’ or that ‘Celeb’, you will be happy. Millions of pounds are spent in the social media industry so that we can look like the people we follow and aspire to live the lives they picture. Yet we know deep down, this does not bring happiness.
Recently Emily Atack, a self-confessed image-focused star, spoke up about this on ‘I’m a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here!’. Emily spoke about how she found that being forced to be away from the image-first culture and having all technology removed had given her space to ponder what really matters.
She discovered when all that was stripped away, she was her real self. In an epiphany moment, Emily said: ‘I actually quite like myself.’
Who would have believed it was possible to be happy when you become who you were meannt to be?
This Christmas we celebrate the birth of Jesus who also invites us to follow Him. We celebrate the fact that He doesn’t do it to sell us a product.
This Christmas in Bedhampton, there are people who celebrate and #FollowTheStar because He offered life to the full. In the process, many will find that when technology is stripped away, they actually quite like who they are and that it is important who we follow. You are welcome to join us on that journey this Christmas. Just #FollowTheStar to www.bedhampton.church/christmas where you will find the #BedhamptonStar - and perhaps find yourself.