As we begin the Waiting – 4 1/2

Isaiah 2:1-5 | Romans 13:11-14 | Matthew 24:37-44

cropped-christmas-advent.jpg“Keep awake therefore, for you do not know on what day your God is coming” (Matt. 24:42)

Advent is a time of waiting in anticipation for the arrival of Christ. The challenge for us today is to really wait for that birth without planning and without assuming we know when and how Christ will appear in our lives.

Because of my relatives and friends
I will say, “Peace be within you!”
Because of the house of the LORD, our God,
I will pray for your good.

Reflections on Scripture as we actively prepare for Christmas

‘Hail, space for the uncontained God’
From the Agathistos Hymn, Greece, VIC

We know the scene: the room, variously
furnished,
almost always a lectern, a book; always
the tall lily.
Arrived on solemn grandeur of
great wings,
the angelic ambassador, standing or
hovering,
whom she acknowledges, a guest.
But we are told of meek obedience. No one
mentions
courage.
The engendering Spirit
did not enter her without consent.
God waited.
She was free
to accept or to refuse, choice
integral to humanness.

Aren’t there annunciations
of one sort or another
in most lives?
Some unwillingly
undertake great destinies,
enact them in sullen pride,
uncomprehending.
More often
those moments
   when roads of light and storm
   open from darkness in a man or woman,
are turned away from
in dread, in a wave of weakness, in despair
and with relief.
Ordinary lives continue.
God does not smite them.
But the gates close, the pathway vanishes.
Source: “Annunciation” from The Stream and the Sapphire, by Denise Levertov. New York: New Directions Publishing, 1997
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