Advent is the waiting time, the pregnant pause, full of anticipation and expectant longing. It is so easy to get caught up in the frenzy around us, the endless pressure to buy, buy, buy, get those Christmas cards out, make plans. I am trying to live into the gift of the waiting time, to notice the building anticipation and hope, to notice the ways that the Spirit has been and is preparing our world for an outbreak of love and peace and joy.
Here is a favorite poem of mine:
It is life in slow motion,
it's the heart in reverse,
too much and too little at once.
It's a train that suddenly
stops with no station around,
and we can hear the cricket,
and, leaning out the carriage
door, we vainly contemplate
a wind we feel that stirs
the blooming meadows, the meadows
made imaginary by this stop.
- Rainer Maria Rilke
There is a single rose blooming in the backyard...Lo, how a rose e'er blooming, from tender stem hath sprung!