I think the rise in popularity in flash fiction has been the ease of reading it on tablets, mobile phones and so on. What has that to do with More than Writers? The impact of flash is brief. The impact of our lives is brief (especially from God’s perspective) but should we despair? No!
If a short story captures a moment in time, a flash tale captures half a moment. Flash fiction reminds me of the old saying about ships that pass in the night. Meet a person here, you may never meet them again, but you can make a tremendous difference to them.
|Are there flash moments in the Nativity? Yes! Image via Pixabay|
Even the Nativity has its “flash” moments (and not just when the angels arrive!).
We never know the innkeeper’s name. We never know how much he helped Mary and Joseph after allowing them the use of the stable. (I think some help would have been inevitable given Mary would've been a frightened girl about to give birth for the first time). We never know how the innkeeper and his wife helped the couple with meals. When Herod’s men came through with murderous intent, did the innkeeper keep quiet about the strange visitors they’d had (in itself helping the Holy Family)?
|Maybe the inn did look like this. Image via Pixabay|
I also love the innkeeper’s story since most stories of school Nativity productions, the funny moments nearly always involve him.
My favourite tale is about a school production on a remote Scottish island renowned for its hospitality (sorry, Wendy, the story didn’t mention which one!).
The innkeeper is upset for having to tell Mary and Joseph there is no room at the inn. The lad playing the innkeeper has also clearly been told he must keep to the script. So manfully he does. But the moment his official role is over he stage whispers to Mary, “Come back later and I’ll see what I can do”.
I still laugh. That was this innkeeper’s flash moment! (Maybe the real innkeeper did tell Mary something like that!).
|Strange visitors... did the innkeeper keep quiet about them? Image via Pixabay|
|A typical Nativity scene but did the innkeeper (and wife) play a crucial supporting role afterwards we do not know about? Image via Pixabay|