Not exactly a Christmas film, but one that features two Christmases in it! I love the 1995 version of this tale, and find it deeply moving. Not least the scene where Beth, in her final moments, assures her sister Jo that she is not afraid. Her three sisters have great ambition and have been off on their various adventures, but for the first time Beth is going ahead of them. To a new place. And she is not frightened. She has a gentle assurance about the next life. One of the great promises of Jesus is that his death and resurrection pave the way for a new life after this one. The assurance that there is more to come. He has gone ahead of us. There is a saying that this life is not a rehearsal and in many ways it is true. But this life is also only the first act in an endless, timeless epic. The biblical letter writer known as Paul left us with the powerful question – death where is your sting? ‘I’m going away to prepare a place for you,’ Jesus assured his friends in John chapter 14. In this life we live with trouble and great loss. And Jesus lived with that himself. But in him we can take hope, and cling on to the promise of a full life to come.
Lord, please help us when we need assurance, thank you for all you have prepared for us. Amen.