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“If you look around the World this Christmas, it’s a pretty bleak place, without much hope”. Those are words I’m hearing quite often. There’s the pandemic; the war in Ukraine; global warming; inflation; people not being able to pay their bills. People are saying they are afraid of what’s going to happen next!

I find myself thinking, “I can’t disagree with that”.

However, last night in the midst of all this negativity, for a little while, I saw a different world as well. A world where there’s no shouting or bombing or war, but a loving world. One which can take your breath away. 

It occurred in one of Sydney’s hundreds of old town halls. It was not an earth shattering event with an immediate outcome, but my guess is something similar was happening in hundreds of thousands of places all around the globe. Individually, each doesn’t count for much, but collectively, a different story is being told.

Something wonderful happened

At this town hall I had noticed the beautiful young girl in the pretty red dress. She was being guided to her seat. She was obviously blind and was being led by her mother, who was making sure she didn’t bump into anything or trip over.

A little while later she was helped on stage and seated behind a keyboard. That took quite a while and it was awkward to watch as the stage was a strange environment to her and she needed to be seated properly. There was a lot of fiddling about with positioning the microphone so that she could sing into it properly while her fingers stroked the keyboard.

This girl began to sing and everyone in the hall fell silent, listening.

She was so, so good!

A few songs later she was joined by a young boy who was also blind. He had the same condition, the only difference being he played the guitar.

His voice was equally good. In other words, breathtaking!

Now, the two were singing a duet to a gobsmacked audience. Suddenly, all their “disabilities“ vanished, and they and the crowd became one in a prolonged existential now.

It was obvious both of these young people had lived challenging lives, and it showed in their choice of songs. However, they did not let their disabilities define them. Indeed, they ignored them or worked around them, and the audience did too. 

Hope filled my world

What a picture of hope these two projected! They showed us first hand we can all be masters of our own destiny. 

They show us that even when the world is a dark place, beauty is knocking on the door to be let in. You only have to hear the knocking.

This Christmas we can all be overcome with the big picture negative stuff and not see the beauty in our own backyard.

So this Christmas I will be looking for those signs of hope which I bet are actually all around, wherever we look.

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  1. Elias Awad 13 December 2022 at 15:55 - Reply

    Many people they live with hope every day of their lives.
    And on the other hand there is leaders around the world the only things they know is destroy freedom and hope. Stay strong and believe in hope how this message we keep on hearing!!!. I come from war zone. I know what is like to have no hope and no freedom. And Thank god I am in Australia i have found hope. But unfortunately not many people are able to find hope and freedom

  2. Roger 13 December 2022 at 16:02 - Reply

    Thanks Bill. What disability indeed!

    My little lovely moment was at Lethbridge yesterday with the lunch van. One of our guests was leaving on his bicycle and was carrying a couple of takeaway frozen meals, some donated bread – and a coffee! I took the coffee out to the street level for him, since he’d parked the bike inside. He was just so appreciative for a simple gesture on my part and he smiled warmly.

    It warmed my heart.

  3. Lee Jahn 13 December 2022 at 16:16 - Reply

    Beautiful c there is beauty all around us , we just need to look, have a blessed Christmas everyone

  4. Bruce cowle 13 December 2022 at 16:33 - Reply

    Hi Bill
    A few months ago in Newtown in a 2nd hand shop I had the pleasure of meeting made my day..
    Sadly just this week my mother passed away from Covid complications. She was my world and I am struggling to come to terms with her passing.So a story of Love and Hope is the medicine I need.
    So Thankyou Bill.

  5. Noel McGarrity 13 December 2022 at 16:37 - Reply

    I love your perspective Mr Crews. ❤️
    I met you recently and what a pleasure it was. Thank you and all that support you in your mission to help others.

  6. Graeme Date 13 December 2022 at 17:29 - Reply

    Thankyou Bill music is a gift given from God and every culture has it . That means music is n the disability community too.Thanks for attending to share your experience luv you Gray Gray God bless.

  7. Trevor Eadie 13 December 2022 at 18:02 - Reply

    It is not a disability, but rather a feature, designed to humble us, at the same time, trying us towards that other wisdom called kindness and gratitude.
    This affords me the opportunity to share John 9:1-3

    Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind
    9 As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

    3 “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.

    May we be unlike the disciples here in automatically assuming blindness (or any other humbling feature) is not a sinful or shameful thing but rather, look very carefully at Jesus’ response to the disciples question.
    That this man is BORN blind, neither this man NOR his parents are sinners

    Praise God for this incident and exchange and praise God for Christmas.

    Merry Christmas and God Bless you all.

    PA: I am born partially deaf.

  8. Denis Mizzi 13 December 2022 at 19:40 - Reply

    I was touched by your experience of those beautiful blind performers. My wife is legally blind.With the minimal vision she has she pursues
    doing her beautiful art.ln darkness
    the illuminating power of creativity manifests itself.Thanks Bill for reminding us the power of the spirit.

  9. Pastor sam masika 13 December 2022 at 22:06 - Reply

    Hi rev Bill, thanks for update concerning what’s happening at the moment in the world, its real world its in darkness and its duty & obligation to light for the world, so as we move at the end of this year of 2022 it’s my humble request for you!! To partner with Bungoma tusome watoto programme Kenya by helping orphans and abandoned children project in Kenya through your prayers and support.

  10. Joe evans 14 December 2022 at 04:03 - Reply

    Another fantastic blog which gave me an insight into the relevance of the Xmas message and made me think
    A wonderful story of those 2 blind kids overcoming their adversity and in that moment bringing us together
    The sprit works in mysterious ways

  11. Robin Plumb 14 December 2022 at 07:19 - Reply

    Thanks Bill- your message helps once again to put it all in perspective. You are shining the light in the darkness.
    Robin Plumb

  12. Mary 14 December 2022 at 08:54 - Reply

    Hi Bill I am one of your lady volunteers. I see you often and you are always
    have a smile for us. I have been volunteering in your Ashfield restaurant and
    sometimes I go on the van. I don’t stand out as I am quiet.
    This year I went to the border town in Hungary to the Ukraine border I showed the Red Cross people my Exodus ID card and they let me stay and help making tea and coffee to the Ukrainian refugees as they are arriving
    Mostly woman and children, I sat with them and talked to them and told them what I am doing in Australia. I also tried to give them cash but they told me no thank you they got money don’t need money just my support
    Thank you for your beautiful words and stories I agree with you 100%
    and love reading them

  13. tony everett 15 December 2022 at 12:22 - Reply

    A blessed and joyous Christmas, Rev Crews. You and your Mission exemplify why we are here on this earth.

  14. Therese Abela-King 16 December 2022 at 13:01 - Reply

    Indeed, YOU are Hope in the world Bill.
    Thank you sincerely being a great light in the world to so many.
    May God bless you always.

  15. Rose Marie Crowe 18 December 2022 at 17:11 - Reply

    I had a latte this morning made by a young Asian girl. She said, “I made you a swan.”
    The figure etched in cream on the surface of the coffee was a beautiful, delicate swirl portraying a swan. It was so amazing, I took a photo of it. As I was leaving, she said, “You made my day!” Imagine–she was the one who made my day. This is how we let each know that we are cherished.

  16. Richard Kahotea 18 January 2023 at 05:32 - Reply

    Thanks Bill, sorry for the lateness in reply but enjoyed your commentary and affiliated comments from others. The World’s a better place when positive anecdotes, responses and consideration for others is so apparent.
    Have a safe and Happy New Year.

    Kindest regards

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