After the festivities of Christmas Day, it is lovely to sit down and gather some reflective thoughts for readers of the Barrhead News.

I was thinking about our nursery rhyme about the magpie and how appropriate it is for Christmas.

Maybe ‘one for sorrow’ can remind us of Joseph, and all people in our world today, who find no room at the inn.

Two for joy can help us see how the Christmas story has room for everyone.

Three for a girl centres on the only woman in the nativity scene – Mary – who, like so many mums, brings welcome love into our ramshackle lives.

Four for a boy is about Jesus and how a tiny child can renew the world with just a smile.

Five and six for silver and gold is for the wise men bringing gifts to remind us how life is about giving, rather than having.

Seven for a secret never to be told is about the true message of Christmas deep in our hearts, as peace that cannot be put into words.

Eight for a wish is the season’s greetings of grace and mercy for our loved ones and hope for our world.

Nine for a kiss is to know not just respect for our rights but the sweet tenderness of human love.

And ten for a bird you must not miss? Well, that’s obvious. It’s that you don’t miss a copy of the Barrhead News this year and that, in 2018, we can help to make a better world.