It is hard being known in a crowd

Can you spot the face of Christ?

Yesterday a friend said to me that she thought a good way to greet another as they come towards us is as though we are meeting Christ. This begs some questions. Would we recognise Christ today? Would we spot him in a crowd? Would he stand out for us? Or would he be just like everyone else? Would we pass by without even noticing? Probably.

I remember once being with a crowd of people and suddenly seeing an image of Christ (for me) in the abstract design on the back of someone’s tee shirt. This really fascinated me but then bizarrely, for some reason, I kept seeing faces of Christ in all sorts of places. In rocks, adverts, even food. Remember the Christ in toast image?!

The face of Christ in toast!

We can read that before Jesus was baptised he came out of the crowd. It would have been a large crowd gathered by the River Jordan as John the Baptiser was a crowd-puller. He was dressed as for a stage, with a part to play, in sackcloth and with a leather belt, just like all great prophets should look. Or at least, that’s what a crowd in Israel 2,000 years ago thought.

But out of that crowd came someone who John said was so great that he was not even worthy enough to tie his shoe laces. Christ was unknown in that crowd. Yes, they may have known someone called Jesus, that carpenter’s son from Nazareth. But they did not know that among them, rubbing shoulders with them, was Emmanuel – the word for ‘God With Us’. That here among them was the Christ, the Messiah.

My friend is quite right. Christ, the Messiah is with us, in the crowd. Once we start seeing the face of Christ in those we meet in the crowd, like my faces of Christ experience, we just won’t stop.

Now wouldn’t that change the world!