18 December 2022—Fourth Sunday of Advent
We’ve spent these last four weeks in
Waiting and preparation and eager anticipation.
We’ve been busy baking and wrapping and shopping
And going to parties and preparing music
And doing all the things that we do in this season that we enjoy.
A season that also can be difficult—stressful, overwhelming,
Or particularly for those who are experiencing a loss or an illness or a change in life—
A season that can be particularly hard.
We think of this coming week and all of the excitement of the holiday,
But we also look at the weather forecast,
And we see how bitter cold it will be,
And wonder how difficult those days will be,
And how that might change our plans,
And then our minds wonder to those who are without a home,
The people or the animals, those who will be outside and exposed to these horrible temperatures.
And we realize that all of our seasons come mixed—
With joy and with despair,
With sadness and with glory.
And we hope during this time that we have learned
To cultivate our attention,
To be able to see you and hear you,
In all the ways that the little lights are shining in the darkness,
That the little tendrils are growing in what seems lifeless.
That wonder has filled our lives,
And given us a sense of hope and encouragement for the future.