We were out for lunch today with friends in Belfast. A bit of a treat for someone’s birthday. Sitting in one of the prized window seats in The Apartment, with a spectacular floor-to-ceiling vista over Belfast City Hall.
Outside in the drizzly rain, carpenters and roofers were putting the finishing touches to the Christmas Market, and Belfast’s rickety wheel was spinning in the background.
With our mouths full of scrumptious food, a child at the table suddenly stretched out his arm and pointed towards the window. He’d just noticed something that the rest of us had missed.
“The lights! They’ve turned on the lights!”
And so they had. At half past two on a Saturday afternoon, three days before the official switch on, we got a preview of the decorated Norway Spruce tree (second attempt), the twinkling trees around the lawns, and the frosted effect down the walls of the City Hall.
We weren’t expecting it. And it took a child to notice the light out the window.
This advent, will we look beyond our own limited vision, and tap into the thoughts and proclamations of others?
Will we manage not to refuse light from any quarter?
Maybe The Mockingbird’s Leap can become an unexpected illumination into our journey towards Christmas Day.