“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.” This is the example that Mary gives to us. Rejoicing. Excitement. Worship. Don’t just watch people walk by on the pilgrimage, join them. Rejoice. Be excited. Worship God.
When I think about these two words together, I cannot help but think about how disturbing it was for some people to see who Jesus invited to the table. Then I think about the people that I have not invited to parties at my house because I did not want to be around them. Jesus, God incarnate, invited these people because of who they were, because they were sinners just like everyone else; who are the people that we deem sinners and do not invite to our table? As we await the Advent of our Lord this season let us invite those whom we would rather not; there will likely be great rejoicing, because our family is that much more complete.
P.S. The end of the semester is greatly hindering my progress this year, I am working on doing better.
Accompany & Adversity… these two words go hand in hand for me. There is no way to overcome adversity without someone accompanying you. The communion of saints is a great gift to us; whether is be Aoífe, Fee, and Cez, or Francis and Claire, or Mandela and Tutu, God has surrounded us with so great a cloud of witnesses that there is nought that cannot be overcome. We cannot complete our pilgrimages without recognizing the value and importance of those with whom we are walking. They are our family, God has given them to us because we are loved and we were created to be in relationship… our love for them, their love for us, and our love for each other is but a pale comparison of God’s love for each of us. Give thanks to God this day for that love.
Patience… is not easy; because it requires that we admit that we do not have all of the answers or all of the power to make a decision. We are forced to take a breath and to wait for God. But sometimes I think that patience calls us into action. As we patiently await the Advent of our Lord, we are called to live like he has already come. Because Christ has come, Christ is here, and Christ will be coming again.
Hero… is one of those words in our society that gets bandied about with rather reckless abandon. There are those that tend to refer to every returning soldier as a hero, as The Rev. David Peters writes, I think that warrior is a more appropriate term. I served with few heroes, but every cavalry scout that I served with was a warrior and I think those men would be much more comfortable with that term.
The Christian life is not the kind of life that attracts the type of people that we consider heroes. There is not much glory in this life and none of it belongs to us. Soli Deo Gloria, To God Alone the Glory. A hero for Christians, is a person who is willing to decrease their own glory, so that the glory of God may shine through. A hero for Christians, is a person through whom the love of Christ shines brighter than the sun. A hero for Christians, is the humble saint that challenges us to be all that God has created us to be.
Thank you Doc for being that humble saint in my life and in the lives of so many others.
Leading is something that not all of us are comfortable doing; we imagine that it is beyond our reach or grasp, that we do not have the requisite skills or charisms, or that it should be done by someone who is ‘better’ than we are. Leadership in the church is not the same as leadership in the secular world. God frequently raises up those whom the rest of the world would not see as leaders. And when God came to earth to lead, God came as a child. As a helpless infant, to show us that being with, not being above, is true leadership. Jesus was, and is, and will be with us… We are called to be with him and with his children. With. With is where we are when we lead.
Last year I wrote daily meditations as part of my observance of the season of Advent, this year I will do the same only I will combine it with a photograph. The word, photograph, and short meditation will hopefully serve to calm my heart and give it the peace to wait upon the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I do not think that there is anything in my life that I have anticipated more than the arrival of this little angel. And even now holding her I will find myself picturing the strong, brave, and beautiful woman that she will become and imagining all of the wonderful things that she will do and accomplish. But then I remember that one day looking at that woman and I will wish that she was this little baby again, that I could take her in my arms, and hold her for hours. The anticipation of things to come is natural and healthy, as long as it does not cause us to rush out of the present, missing the blessings that abound.