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The John Lewis advert is perhaps now every bit a Christmas tradition as roasting chestnuts, watching Love Actually (maybe that’s just me?), or even, dare I say it, the Queen’s Speech.

In that sense it’s almost like a national reference point. We’ve pretty much all seen it, and likewise we all know whether we like this year’s offering more or less than previous years, whether it’s 2014’s Monty the Penguin, or 2011’s classic, ‘The Long Wait’ (definitely my fave for tear-jerker value!).

So I think it’s brilliant that Dan Rackham, a community worker based out of a church in Toxteth, has gone and re-made the 2015 advert, but with a Christian twist.

Rather than being about a gift for the ‘Man on the Moon’, this is about the ultimate gift: the ‘Baby from the Stars’.

I hope you like it and want to share it (use this link: https://youtu.be/KoxTF_31yyE)!

Dan’s a mate, and it’s been amazing to see how he’s taken his initial idea of a fun re-make and made it into a fully-fledged viral reality.

And whilst he’s obviously nifty behind the camera, with a good eye for detail, not to mention bags of imagination, the thing that has driven Dan has been a desire to take the opportunity to engage people with the wonder of how we’ve all been #lovedthisChristmas.

One reason I love the way Dan’s re-made the video is because it encapsulates quite a simple message, and yet one that is ever-relevant. In many ways the questions that the girl in the video asks are questions that we all pose to some degree or another:

Is there a God out there?

Does he care?

Can we really know?

And often we can be oblivious to the way in which the Christmas story speaks into those questions.

Yet what we remember at Christmas is precisely the moment that God revealed his answer to those questions, in entering into our world, stepping onto the pages of history, as nothing less than a person: Jesus, the long-promised king.

God himself came to us, both making himself known and making himself knowable.

So one of the hopes with the video and accompanying website, LovedthisChristmas.com, is that it allows people to begin exploring what Jesus is all about, not least with a ‘Continue the Story’ section.

The website also gives you the opportunity to take things further by ordering a free copy of Glen Scrivener’s Four Kinds of Christmas book (as well as entering the competition to win the telescope and helmet used in both the re-make and the original JL video!).

You can also download HQ versions of the video to use offline in churches and at other events. And they’ll be an online Advent Calendar tweeted out via @lovedthisXmas.

The video has already received media coverage through ITV, Premier, and the Liverpool Echo.

Did you know this ‘baby from the stars’ means you’ve been loved this Christmas?

Bizarrely, the other day I remembered this blog post from 2008, in which I exude unashamedly about the time Dan was my housemate and built me my own fold-out bed from scratch. But that’s another story…