A Season of Advent

When I was little I had those Advent calendars with the little chocolate behind the perforated paper door. And I couldn’t figure out why it ended on Christmas Eve since Santa’s arrival was the next day, it seemed to me there should be one more chocolate to get  us to the Big Day.

There we have two patterns of my life:

1- Wanting one more chocolate

2- Missing the point

It wasn’t until 2003 when I began attending an Episcopal church (waving at you St. Andrew’s) that I celebrated Advent. The weeks preceding Christmas with a candle lit each week. More light coming in as the weeks progress. A special prayer for each week as we acknowledged the darkness in our lives and world and found ourselves in a season of expectant waiting for the the birth of Jesus.

I found it beautiful.

And this year, I have been in my own season of advent.

After DH and I separated (I will stop calling him DH soon, but old habits are hard to break), I was filled with darkness. The questions I had were tinged with dark. The things I did with Little Sir- alone- had a shadow. Each interaction with my-soon-to-be-ex so hard I could barely make eye contact. And I kept the Kleenex close.

But…

But as the weeks progressed, I have gotten some answers that brought light. Little Sir and I are finding our rhythm. I have laughed with no kick in the gut. I have had fun with no phantom pain in the missing limb. I have gone from saying “Why?” to “Thank you.”

As I put the Christmas lights up, I didn’t just see more light.

I felt it.

The Advent season of my faith ends today with lighting the last candle in the wreath. My personal advent season continues as I still have a lot about his new life that feels unsettled. Expectant waiting.

But…

But today we light the last candle. The big one. The one we have been waiting all these weeks to light. I feel that sense of joy and completion, and it infuses the rest of my life.

God is here.

God is with us.

Immanuel.

Welcome! Thank you for coming! We have been waiting for you! We have needed your light to dispel the dark and light our way.

That’s what Light does. It floods. It reaches. Its rays that pour through the dark canopies to cast goldenJanuary 2, 2013 069 light upon what can not reach up.

As I look at this new life, I find myself turning my face to catch those rays.

And looking up.

And feeling warmth.

And love.

And light.

God is with us.

God bless us, every one.

Merry Christmas!

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