November 29, 2006

Advent

If patience is a virtue, then my “virtuousness” may have to come from other attributes. I dislike waiting. Maybe it is because I was younger than all my friends in school that I have always been in a hurry. Perhaps being the last to date, the last to get a driver’s license, etc. has influenced me in that direction. There is likely a gender connection as well, though it may be best “not to go there.” Whatever the cause of my impatience, it remains that I want things done and I want them done now.

Christmas is challenging for me because it is precisely about waiting. We await the coming of Christ as man. We await the coming of Christ in the human heart. We await the coming of Christ at the end of the age. Advent is a season of anticipation, preparation, and penitence. The idea of making preparation for a future religious observance is not a new one. It is rooted in Jewish history. The Jewish people scheduled at least six days of preparation for each major feast. In our present society this idea of preparation may well be a lost one.

As we face the days leading up to Christmas it seems to me that we have three choices. We can ignore the call to prepare. We can depend passively on others to make Christmas meaningful for us; or we can decide to spend these days in such a manner that instead of empty anticipation we experience the depth and joy of the season.

As we become busier, and we will, try to find the time to enjoy this Advent. Be blessed by it and use it as a time to grow closer to our Lord and Savior. Not only will Christmas become more meaningful, but time will seem to fly by for those who don’t like waiting!