Often, half of the happiness of important events in life is the preparation. This is particularly true of Advent and Christmas. Advent is for travelers whose spiritual journey is not just personal, but for the people and needs of those around them and those beyond them.
Like Jesus, we live in a time marked by language and actions that create separation, division, greed and disunity. Only God can heal and transform our world, but the world can be healed and transformed by the help of the real image, power and wisdom of the Divine within each of us. Jesus didn’t form a steering committee, draft a proposal, design goals and outcomes or conduct a feasibility study.* Jesus simply lived profoundly conscious of the dignity and oneness of all people in God, no one excluded. His mind and heart connected to life at all levels of creation. He was the human expression of God’s inclusive love, compassion, mercy and justice. Like us, he did this in the ordinary of every day.
Advent is a time to be more attentive to our world’s hunger for us to speak the language of love, unity, reconciliation and forgiveness. It’s a time for us to be more conscious of how we nourish life when we read to our children; cook a meal; work honestly and responsibly; sort out the garbage; extend a warm handshake or hug; and resist thoughts of prejudice, exclusion, retaliation or divisiveness. A simple awareness of our thoughts and actions can unite us with Jesus’ prayer “that all may be one.” Advent is about seeing the needs of the times in the ordinary (and extraordinary) of the life of our family, neighbors, world and planet. In this way we meet God in a new way with our love, compassion, courage and care.
Our Advent journey can be our contribution to God’s world this Christmas. Each of us can bring to birth pieces of the realm of God as Jesus did two thousand years ago.
Blessings on Your Advent Journey.
*Our Journey toward Joy, S. James Meyer.
Including the Earth in Our Prayers, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee.