Written after seeing the wall in Bethlehem,

dividing Israel and Palestine,

November 2008


They come in teeming busloads

To Bethlehem today

To see the spot of Jesus birth

To find out where he lay.

But -

A wall divides that little town;

Bethlehem’s not the same

As when those shepherds and the flocks

In awe and wonder came.

A wall is there to separate

Brother man from brother;

It tries to say in concrete form

That God is not “our” Father.

A wall just speaks of hate, not love;

A wall is built on fear;

A wall says yes, we are at war;

And shouts,  “God is not here.”


But the Bible tells us clearly:

“For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances;  for to make in Himself of twain one new man (nation) so making peace.”

Ephesians 2:14,15


So may our prayer this Christmas

Be to see our world ‘unwalled’;

Graffiti-less, unbounded, free,

Where everyone is called

To be the royal child of God,

Not hemmed in by a wall,

But one united family

Kneeling at Bethlehem’s stall.








May your Christmas be filled with

the SIMPLICITY of the first Christmas,

the JOY of the angels at that time,

the LOVE that the shepherds brought,

the ABUNDANCE given by the three kings,

and the RADIANCE of that guiding star:


and may true UNITY be felt at your firesides

and in the world.




 Jill Gooding