As it is Epiphany, I think it is time for me to apologise to the BBC for criticising The Nativity before seeing it. It did take extra-Biblical liberties, but from what I saw, it brought the reality of the story to light very well.
What prompts me on this particular day is the recollection of the Top Gear presenters, Clarkson, May and Hammond traversing the desert as the 'Three Wise Men' to offer gifts to an infant Stig in a stable over Christmas. Making fun of ordinary people's daily battle with terrorism came with dressing up in burkas, offering the wrong gifts when they got there and not having a clue what the real Wise Men's gifts of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh actually meant (they signify Christ's Kingship, his Divinity (or Priesthood) and his sacrificial death on that cross the Muslims and the Secularists hate so much).
But what has lost so much of my respect for Top Gear is not its flippant, deliberately-ignorant manner (I so hope it is deliberate), but the sham of the whole thing.
There is Clarkson being a big scaredy-cat, saying 'there might be a sniper around this corner.' We see his timid little car poking its nose around the corner in question. Er, filmed by the cameraman who has just taken the last two or three minutes to set up in the road in front of him around exactly the same corner, where he and the director are plainly not exactly dodging the bullets.
Some years ago, I was playing in a band at a church in Sydenham, South London, for the Epiphany service. The woman vicar was a bit like Dawn French, but with short, grey hair. Treating the adult congregation as if they were children, she opened, 'Well, this is the time of the church's year we call 'E-PIPH-A-NEE'. This is when we remember that the baby Jesus had a visit from three wise men - if there is such a thing.'
On Top Gear there is indeed not such a thing.
It's only the realisation that God is working his purpose out and that Christ has the victory which enables me to say with any hope:
HAPPY NEW YEAR!