Now that I am a parent, I am getting closer to understanding what that must have been like for him. It is our tendency in North American culture, to complain about surplus: too much to buy, too much to do, too many friends and too much family to see, parties to go to and church services to fit in. How foolish. How selfish. We rush about and never take time to swallow the richness or savour the season. In this Advent season, I challenge you to be cognoscente of what is going on around you and inside you. Christmas is not all about us as individuals. It’s not about what we will receive or the memories we will have but what we can give to others. Giving and enjoying time spent with those who love my children, parents and grandparents alike. How blessed we are. Christmas is not about enduring our endless responsibilities either. Working at an Anglican Church we are no strangers to the marathon of services, (especially years, like this year when Sunday falls the day before Christmas Eve) but consider how blessed we are that we have the freedom to worship and if we can not take time to be quiet and reflect in Church, God’s house, then will our meditation elsewhere be any more effective? Last week, as I sat in church alone, frazzled and distant (Ben had another commitment), I was contemplating the busyness of my life desperate for some time to take for myself – time to regroup, meditate and prepare for the season of Advent. And it was in that moment, as they prepared the bread and the wine, that a still, small voice whispered “now. I have given you now.”
Take the now, and have a blessed first week of Advent.