November 27, 2011

Both Lectionary texts for this Sunday are about waiting, and how to wait. “Waiting” and “waiting with hope” is the whole meaning of “Advent.” Something is about to happen, and we are waiting with anticipation. It’s like expecting company, a special guest, and we clean up the house and prepare for meals. We think about what kind of conversations we will have. What questions we might ask. What gifts we might offer our invited guest. This is the mood of Advent.

Interesting it is, how more of the Bible is not about “God present” but rather “God absent,” and the experience of people waiting for God to act in their lives (Abraham looking for the Promised Land, people enslaved in Egypt waiting for release, people in exile longing to return to their homeland). During the times of waiting, the teachings of the Bible emerge: people hear prophecies, absorb instructions, and discover new ways of living.

Advent times are critically important, for unless we are fully prepared when the “Good News” comes, we can very well miss it.