I repeatedly vow not going to start my day reading the news. And yet I did it again this morning. After absorbing the events of the day, I felt discouraged and angry. What do we stand for as a country when we imperil the safety net for the least of these? What does it mean to be Christian when Christianity is wielded as a shield for one who is accused of harming children?
I lamented to Malcolm about how powerless I feel in an age mired in greed and lies. I told him I worry that we are wasting our time in our desire to make the world a better place. Then I put down the news, lit a candle, and opened one of my favorite prayer books, Sounds of the Eternal: A Celtic Psalter by John Philip Newell and read,
“Wait for God, be strong, let your heart take courage, wait for God.” Psalm 27:14
Tomorrow begins the season of Advent, a time of holy waiting, a time of preparation, a time of expectation. Like Lent, Advent is a penitential time–a time to reckon with that which broken within us, and among us, a time to acknowledge our shortcomings, and turn back toward a merciful God, asking for forgiveness and willing to live into new life.
I am not very good at waiting. I am suspicious of the way “waiting” has been used to continue to oppress the marginalized. And yet, the psalmist links waiting with strength and courage. The psalmist reminds us we are a people of hope.
Pondering this holy waiting, I am aware that waiting is not a passive pursuit. After Mary bravely assented to carry the Christ-child, she did not sit still. Her holy waiting began with a revolutionary proclamation of praise and a trek to her cousin, Elizabeth’s home.
As we settle into this Advent-eve I wonder what awaits us as we ponder waiting for God. I pray we will be strong, that we will let our hearts take courage as we wait for God.
God’s deep and abiding peace,