Christmas lights and Christmas trees have gone up all over town, but the first weeks of Advent at our house are quiet and spare. I’ve put out pictures of Mary and her Babe, a wreath, a Jesse Tree, but the boxes of red and green decorations have stayed in the attic.
I want to feel the wait.
At the store I finger garlands and candles, imagine a new set of scarlet and white dishes, marvel at the multitude of santas and not one angel, not one baby tucked into a manger. Then I push my cart on down the aisle, empty.
I need the space in my belly for something new to grow.
On the first day of our Jesse Tree devotions we read the creation story and enter again the wonder of the God who forms a world out of darkness, a home for His children with the words of His mouth.
At church our pastor says it clear, “What He speaks, He creates.”
Here is something that stirs inside.
Mary heard the creation-words and responded, “Let it be with me just as you say…” She received a Son of flesh and a sword to pierce her side. I touch her picture and think I understand why the season is crammed with spun sugar and noise, a cavalcade of nothingness.
If we dare to wait hungry,
if we are silent and listening,
it's possible that we, too, may hear a word heavy with promise.