Sunday, December 3, 2017

Awaken: Advent Arrives

We look forward to walking with you as we journey together through Advent. Our theme this year is “renewal.”

When I think about carving out space for renewal in my life I am reminded of Wendell Berry’s poem, The Peace of Wild Things:

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.*
The idea of taking the time to step back, pause and rest seems at first to be in stark contrast to our gospel message today: Keep awake. Keep awake—the Son of Man is coming soon in great power and glory.
But observing and celebrating this season of Advent too—this season of expectant waiting and watching and renewal and peace and hope—is a radical act of resistance to the chaotic holiday rush happening all around us.
How easy is it to forget to slow down and look for signs of God? This is the invitation of Advent: take the time to pause. Take the time to step back and rest in the grace of God for a time.  Return renewed so that we might stay awake to Christ’s presence in our lives. Return renewed so that we might stay awake to the myriad ways in which we are called by God to work to love and heal the world.
Post by Dana Capasso Stivers

Photo taken by Dana at Incarnation Camp and Conference Center

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