As I sit here this morning, I am facing a pile of presents in brightly colored wrappings of Christmas red, gold, blue and green. Personally I have no trouble seeing the stack before me--no anxiety--no heart quickening--but of course I know what each package holds. Treasures I've purchased over the last six months (more earnestly in recent weeks) to delight the hearts of those I love.
Liam and Lauren and even Isaac at 15 would love to come into this special room and shake each one guessing what it might be. Christmas fever is strong at this time of year. Their joy can hardly be contained. "Just let me open one Grammie; augh come on!" And yet, there is more to this season than our expectations of what might lie underneath even the shiniest of wrappings and bows.
I cherish this season of waiting each year with all its symbols. I'm drawn in by the days that are shorter and the many different ways we are able to add light. Though the practical use of candles has long since ceased to be relevant...I light more candles in Advent than at any other time of the year. A reminder, with each stroke of the match and flickering of light on the walls and ceiling, that we see only darkly--but a Light is coming into the world.
It's my own prayerful wondering in this season of waiting that causes anticipation to rise in my heart and mind. How might Christ be being born anew in me? What lies ahead that His Light will reveal? What gift of His Presence does He intend for me to notice this Advent as the light increases as each new candle makes the way brighter?
My waiting on this second Sunday of Advent has simply called me into the mystery of contentment in what has not yet been revealed. This year's waiting is stretching me to live more faithfully in the unknown of God's love. Perhaps that's why the second candle of Advent called to me so early this morning...because Christ was beckoning me to receive His peace in the darkness of the morning.
My prayer is that you might take time to ponder the movements of this Advent Season. May your waiting be spiritually fruitful. May the gifts you receive be like the pearl of great price...and may the Light of Christ illumine your way. May the Light of Christ, be your way.
In Peace and Joy, KATHLEEN BRONAGH WELLER, the celtic monk