“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits ,and in his word I hope.” (Psalm 130:5 )
It was Christmas Eve. The church was filled with expectant worshippers, but as I looked out over the congregation from the chancel, I saw two special couples singing side by side – and waiting. The one couple was waiting for death to claim the husband’s terminally ill mother. The other couple were waiting for the birth of their first child.
How many others here are waiting for death or for life? I wondered. How many are watching for the coming of God into joyful and tangled or pain- filled existence?
Perhaps we are all waiting, I thought. We are all in this church waiting and hoping for something.
That is what Advent is all about, isn’t it? Advent recalls Israel’s centuries of waiting for the Messiah. The scripture reminds us that we, too, are waiting for God to move in our lives and in our world. Then Advent quietly insists that there is something worth waiting for. It tells us that our hope is not hollow, that as surely as God came to those people in the stable in Bethlehem, so God will come to us. With this assurance we can wait together, trusting and hoping in God.
Rev. Douglas Reble
Assistant to the Bishop