i have been a little down this weekend, returning from thanksgiving and ys. i realized at church yesterday, that i just wasn't ready for advent...i wasn't ready for it to be december and ultimately christmas. i'm frustrated by all the craziness, the expectations, the shopping. i have friends who are already through buying and starting to wrap, while i haven't even begun and really don't want to. As i drove into town on saturday night i saw just how many folks already had their christmas lights up while i still have pumpkins on my porch. why the rush? why the franticness? black friday, cyber monday, trampling fellow shoppers at walmart. it is all so far from the stable at bethlehem. and this year especially, i feel less in the holiday spirit...there are so many folks on the gulf coast still homeless, still digging out, still waiting for help.
so far i haven't convinced the relatives that we should donate our present money to those who really need it...rather than shopping for ourselves.
father foote reminded us on sunday that it this is not merely a holiday....not merely a stable, not merely a manger...but it's a celebration, it's the birth of the king! a king that comes into a messy world to set us free.
am i willing to set aside my negativity and my "merely" attitude in order to behold the king and really experience his birth in my life this advent? yes lord jesus...i will sing " o come o come emmanuel " and take the time to prepare for your coming.
btw.. if you need some help taking time out in this busy season, the sacred space web site has a great advent retreat you can download...see my sidebar for the link...and pray for rob this week. he is at the abbey of gethsemane for a silent retreat with our favorite monks down in kentucky.